By McCourtney Institute for Democracy
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Building and sustaining a democracy is hard work. It’s not glamorous and often goes unnoticed in the daily news cycle. On Democracy Works, we talk to people who are out there making it happen and discuss why that work is so important. If you’re looking for partisan bickering or hot takes on the news, this is not the podcast for you. We aim to take have informed, intelligent, and thought-provoking discussions about issues related to democracy. Democracy Works is produced by the McCourtney Institute for Democracy at Penn State and recorded at WPSU Penn State.
||CleanSeason 1 finale: A democracy summer reading list||Ah, summer. Time to kick back and relax with a good book or two. If you’ve been to a book store or the library lately, then you’ve probably seen at least a few books on democracy on the shelves. The 2016 presidential election spurred a lot of conve||7/9/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanBonus: A dose of optimism about the future of democracy||If you need a sense of hope about the future of democracy, you’ve come to the right place. Stephanie Keyaka, editor-in-chief of The Underground and one of the McCourtney Institute’s Nevins Fellows, is spending the summer interning for Zeke Cohen o||7/5/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E18: The constitutional crisis episode||This is one we’ve been wanting to do since we started the podcast. The term constitutional crisis is frequently used but often misunderstood. Like democracy, it’s hard to define but you know it when you see it. If anyone can provide a definition,||7/2/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E17: What public sector unions can teach us about democracy||Earlier this year, images of teachers protesting for higher wages in Arizona, Colorado, and Oklahoma flooded the airwaves as teachers took action against years, if not decades, of stagnant wages being asked to do more with less in the classroom.||6/26/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E16: Unpacking political polarization||Polarization is a term that’s thrown around among political pundits as one reason for the decline of American democracy — often without an explanation of what it really means. We’re even guilty of it on this show. To set the record straight,||6/25/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E15: What should voting look like in the 21st century?||Across the U.S., the process to register to vote and cast a ballot is different in every state. And we’re not just talking about minor details. The entire registration process and timeline can vary widely from one state,||6/18/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E14: When the “business of business” bleeds into politics||What is the role of a corporation in a democracy? If you asked Milton Friedman, the answer would be none at all. He famously said in the 1970s that the only corporate social responsibility a company has is to turn a profit for its shareholders.||6/11/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E13: Michael Mann on the hockey stick and the future of expertise||This episode is not about climate change. Well, not directly, anyway. Instead, we talk with Nobel Prize winner and Penn State Distinguished Professor of Meteorology Michael E. Mann about his journey through the climate wars over the past two decades an.||6/4/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E12: Can young people revive civic engagement?||Peter Levine is one of the country’s leading scholars in the area of civic engagement. He is the Associate Dean for Research and Lincoln Filene Professor of Citizenship & Public Affairs in Tufts University’s Jonathan Tisch College of Civic Life an||5/29/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanBonus: Democracy In Action #1||We love talking with scholars and thought leaders on Democracy Works, but we’d also like to bring you the everyday stories of democracy in action. This the first installment in that series. We visited the central Pennsylvania chapter of Moms Demand A||5/24/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E11: A conversation about conversation||This week’s episode seeks to answer one simple, but very important, question: Why is it so hard for people to talk to each other? There are a lot of easy answers we can point to, like social media and political polarization,||5/21/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E10: Ten thousand democracies||One of the things we talked about in our episode with How Democracies Die author Daniel Ziblatt is the “grinding work” that it takes to make a democracy function. School board meeting rooms around the country are some of the places where that happe||5/11/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E9: The U.S. Census — it’s good to be counted||The next census is still a few years away in 2020, but the U.S. Census Bureau is already hard at work on preparing to count the more than 325 million people in the United States. The census is one of the few democratic norms that’s required by the Con||5/8/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E8: Satire is good for more than just a few laughs||Political satire has been around nearly as long as politics itself and can provide a much needed laugh in times of crisis. But, as you’ll hear from our guests this week, it’s much more than that. Satire is a check on people in power and helps to en||5/1/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E7: Tommie Smith: From sharecropper to Olympic protester||Tommie Smith is a true living legend. He won a gold medal in the men’s 200 meter event at the 1968 Olympics, setting a world record in the process. When he took the medal stand in Mexico City that day, he made history again by raising a black-gloved f||4/24/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E6: Generation Z and the future of democracy||Over the past few months, the members of Generation Z have combined the tenets of traditional social movements with the power of social media to reimagine what it means to protest in a democracy. That energy was on display during the March for Our Live.||4/17/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E5: How Democracies Die author Daniel Ziblatt on the ‘grinding work’ of democracy||Daniel Ziblatt has done a lot of interviews since the release of How Democracies Die, the bestselling book he co-wrote with Steven Levitsky. But we asked him a question he’d never gotten before — about a line toward the end of the book when he r||4/10/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E4: What can Pennsylvania voters do about gerrymandering?||Pennsylvania received a new congressional map earlier this year, closing the books on what was widely considered one of the most egregious examples of partisan gerrymandering after 2010 census. Chris Satullo sees that decision as winning the battle ag||4/3/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E3: Fake news, clickbait, and the future of local journalism||Can philanthropy save local journalism? Are the calls of “fake news” from Washington impacting the work of journalists in other parts of the country? We discuss those questions and the role of the free press in a democracy with Halle Stockton,||3/27/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E2: Checking the President’s power||From Watergate to Benghazi to Robert Mueller, U.S. history is full of congressional hearings. You’ve no doubt heard about them in the news, but do you know what those House and Senate committees actually do and what their role is in a democracy?||3/20/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanS1E1: Is Colin Kaepernick a good democrat?||No matter how much of a sports fan you are, you probably remember seeing Colin Kaepernick kneeling during National Anthem. President Trump took the debate to a whole new level when he said that anyone who does not respect the National Anthem and the fl.||3/14/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||CleanWhat is Democracy Works?||From the McCourtney Institute for Democracy at Penn State, this is Democracy Works. In this episode, hosts Michael Berkman and Chris Beem take a few minutes to explain why we wanted to start this podcast and what we hope to achieve through our intervie.||3/12/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
This show isn’t my usual listen but I enjoyed the format. How the show was structured was great and the host are very well spoken!
Also I enjoyed the production quality.
This is a great approach to highlighting something that we don't always consider having grown up with democracy. The host provides great insight into the everyday operations of democracy.