Governments have made a difference to inequality in the past, as Roosevelt’s New Deal did in the 1930s, and could do so again if citizens acted to ensure their voices are heard.
Governments' lack of response to rising inequality is not a problem of knowledge or public support. The problem is that those whose needs are being ignored must find a way to make themselves heard.
Voters might be quite rational in refusing to give the green light to those who wield power and benefit from the status quo.
Ambivalence among voters is reason to think about how democracy is working for us as a community. To keep democracy alive we need to be sceptical about the exercise of power and keep it in check.
Populism celebrates laypeople without offering them any real autonomy or integrity.
The only exceptional leaders we need today are the ones who help us to govern and take care of ourselves.
Can we avert a populist apocalypse through good old-fashioned deliberation?
Populist politics would appear to have left deliberative democracy by the wayside, but innovations that engage citizens in reasoned decision-making have much to offer.
A polarising election issue in Western Australia, the Roe 8 project illustrates the need for better and more democratic decision-making.
One reason Perth's Roe 8 project is the subject of passionate protests is that it's a case of a government asserting power over people rather than exercising power with local communities.
Tea Party supporters have been demanding to be heard for a long time.
We are witnessing the global rise of populism. Once seen as a fringe phenomenon from another era or only certain parts of the world, populism is a mainstay of politics today across the globe.
Without democratic reform, the time ahead for both Britain and the EU looks bleak indeed.
The Brexit vote was the outcome of the disillusionment and disengagement that have permeated the UK. Many Europeans share that mood, which is why both the UK and EU need radical democratic surgery.
Donald Trump is a spectre of things to come: of political performance in an age of projection rather than representation.
The faultlines in democratic politics are clear. On one side is a system of democracy that is bad at making people feel represented. On the other are anti-politician performers like Donald Trump.
Malcolm Turnbull outlines his vision of ‘City Deals’ that enable ‘smart cities’ to drive growth in the new economy.
The Turnbull government sees the 'City Deal' as a way for 'smart cities' to drive innovation and growth. But what is the value proposition behind this UK concept and how might it work in Australia?
Without metropolitan governance that is responsive to city residents’ wishes, states are much influenced by federal priorities – that is, by the money on offer.
Representative and accountable metropolitan government is needed to lead metro-scale planning, infrastructure investment and services, and partnerships with the private sector and civil society.
President Xi Jinping and the rest of the Chinese leadership do not get to positions of national leadership without undergoing decades of trials to demonstrate their capacity to run a country.
The China Model features political meritocracy at the top, democracy at the bottom and experimentation in between. The West can learn from the best of Chinese leadership, even if it is authoritarian.
When our political institutions are market-driven, they risk becoming a democratic shell that no longer serves the people, as the European Union experience is showing.
Democracy’s problem is not the crisis but the triumph of capitalism. Democracy has become market-conforming, resulting in whole sections of society lacking meaningful representation.
Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and his team go on a bus tour thanking supporters after their landslide election victory.
Elections Singapore-style are so heavily stacked in favour of the PAP, which has ruled for 56 years, that the country's newly re-elected government is more authoritarian than democratic.
The federation’s problems have outlasted the leaders who sought transformative reforms a decade ago; their successors must be wholly committed and follow democratic principles if they are to do any better.
The federalism discussion paper is out and the prime minister has called a leaders' 'retreat' to consider it. They should build on the Constitution's democratic principles to make the federation work better.
In the Anthropocene, human-driven forces are shaping the planet in ways that may risk the collapse of human civilisation.
The Anthropocene, as an epoch of human-driven planetary change, poses huge environmental and political problems. But it could also force us to develop proper ecological and democratic accountability.
Chee Soon Juan, pictured campaigning for Singapore’s 2011 general elections, hopes to build on that success in the next election, which is widely expected to be held early, possibly even this year.
The Lee dynasty and their People's Action Party have ruled Singapore since 1959, but their grip on power has weakened. Opposition leader Chee Soon Juan talks about about his long fight for change.