Teaching

Current Courses

Democracy in Crisis? (Summer Semester)

Democracy is widely viewed as the only normatively legitimate form of government in modern societies. Yet, at the same time, the institutions of advanced democracies are coming under severe pressure as a result of political apathy, lack of public trust, institutional capture by the wealthy and the rise of populist parties and leaders. This course explores and assesses the current threats facing democracy. Is rising inequality transforming democracies into oligarchies? Does globalization make popular sovereignty impossible? Is populism a threat or essential to democracy? And does the digital revolution undermine civil and political rights? The course brings together political theory and empirical political science to analyse these issues and evaluate the state of democracy in the 21st Century.

 

Democracy: Past, Present and Future (Summer Semester)

This course examines three key ideas around which democratic institutions have been organised: representation, sortition (or selection by lot), and oversight. It covers the historical emergence of these ideas and how they became linked to the notion of democracy, as well as what governance challenges they were used to address.  We similarly investigate what representation, sortition and oversight mean for today’s democracies – how are they employed and for what purposes? Then finally, we explore together how these practices may be developed in the future to tackle some of the challenges currently facing democracies.

 

New Methods for Analysing Democratic Practice (Winter Semester)

This course introduces a range of different methodological approaches to conducting social science research within the context of studying democratic innovation. You will learn about new research methods and new ways of doing democracy. The aim of the course is to give you a broad understanding of a number of different research approaches, their strengths and weaknesses, and the principles of good research design. It introduces quantitative and qualitative methods from well-known approaches like experiments and case studies, to lesser-known methods such as participatory action research and Q-method.

  

Democracy in the Digital Age (Winter Semester – Masters-level)

The internet was first heralded as a liberating, democratising force that could both topple dictators and provide new technologies for collective organisation. Now it is more likely to be lamented for destroying democracy by trapping us in filter bubbles and proliferating fake news. This course looks at the opportunities and challenges for democracy in the digital age. How can digital technology be used to transform democracy for the better and how might it undermine the basis of democratic societies? The course takes a project-based learning approach, giving you substantial control over which issue you focus your work on.

 

Past Courses

Q-Method: A Practical Introduction (Postgraduate module).
Department of Social Sciences, Goethe University Frankfurt.

Innovations in Democratic Practice Module (Undergraduate module).
Department of Politics and International Relations, University of Westminster (Teaching Assistant).

Data Analysis for Social Policy Module (Undergraduate module).
Department of Social Policy, London School of Economics (Teaching Assistant).

 

Guest Lectures

‘Attitudinal Research’ on Social Policy Research Module (Postgraduate).
Department of Social Policy, London School of Economics.

‘NHS Citizen’ on Innovations in Democratic Practice Module (Undergraduate).
Department of Politics and International Relations, University of Westminster.

‘Mixed Methods in Social Policy Research’ on Social Policy Research Module (Postgraduate).
Department of Social Policy, London School of Economics.