Both the City of Southampton and the Department of Politics and International Relations (PAIR) at the University of Southampton continue to mark their 50th anniversaries this year. 2015 will also celebrate the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta. As calls for stronger democracy and constitutional change as well as dissatisfaction with politics continue to increase there is no better or more pressing time to discuss the state of democracy. Southampton City Council and PAIR will be holding a public event on the evening of this Thursday 8th of January at Southampton City Council Chambers to discuss and debate the problems and prospects for democracy at local and national levels in the UK. The event will start at 5pm and will involve short talks from university lecturers, contributions from City Council and audience participation. We would encourage interested members of the public as well as members of the university to come along, listen and contribute their own knowledge and experience.
Prof Gerry Stoker is a frequent distinguished contributor in both national and international media. His expertise covers everything from democratic politics, local and regional governance, urban politics and public participation to public service reform.
Cllr Simon Letts has a rich experience of government in Southampton having first served on the City Council in 1991. He was appointed Leader of the Council in May 2013.
Prof Will Jennings’ expertise covers agenda-setting, public opinion, electoral behaviour, political parties, and the governance of mega-projects and mega-events. His research has made significant contributions to improvements in public policy-making.
Dr Matthew Ryan is an expert in new forms of citizen participation in politics through democratic innovations. He contributes to a number of national and international projects aimed at increasing and deepening public participation in politics.
Cllr Daniel Jeffrey is a successful PAIR graduate. He represents the Sholing Ward and is Cabinet Member for Education and Change.