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The Unit’s forthcoming seminars, conferences and lectures are listed below. Most of our events are free of charge and open to the public. To attend our events it is essential to book and details of how to do so are available via the links below. You can also contact the Unit directly if you require more information.

Forthcoming events at the Constitution Unit


The Burns report on Shrinking the Lords: Where are we, One Year on?

In recent years the size of the House of Lords has become increasingly controversial, with the number of members standing at around 800 – up from fewer than 700 in 1999. In December 2016, following a motion in the House of Lords itself demanding action, the Lord Speaker's Committee on the Size of the House was established, chaired by the Crossbencher Lord (Terry) Burns. It reported at the end of October 2017, proposing a system of phased retirements, crucially combined with a more regulated and sustainable system for new appointments. At this event Lord Burns will reflect upon progress (or lack thereof) since his report was published, alongside Labour's Baroness (Ann) Taylor of Bolton, who served on his committee and chairs the House of Lords Constitution Committee, and Conservative Sir Bernard Jenkin, who chairs the House of Commons Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee (PACAC).

Starts: Nov 28, 2018 5:30:00 PM

Digital Democracy: brave new world or bubble and hype?

Digital campaigning has received a bad press recently. But the internet also has huge potential to engage and mobilise people, and enable them to be more active citizens.  This seminar brings together three leading figures from new democracy organisations to talk about ways in which technology can enhance democratic participation, and also about some of its limitations.

Starts: Dec 3, 2018 6:15:00 PM

Democratic Competition: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Ian Shapiro discusses the varieties of political competition across the democratic world. He shows why efforts to reform political parties over the past several decades to make them more democratic have backfired, compounding voter alienation, undermining good governance, and empowering demagogues and other populists. He also explains what needs to be done to reverse the trend. This talk draws from his new book with Frances Rosenbluth: Responsible Parties: Saving Democracy from Itself (Yale University Press, 2018).

Starts: Dec 12, 2018 6:00:00 PM

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