Since its origins, democracy has been a work in progress. Today, many question its resilience. The Bertelsmann Foundation and Humanity in Action have teamed up with Andrew Keen, author of How to Fix the Future, to launch How to Fix Democracy: a video and podcast series exploring practical responses to the threats facing democracies around the world. Host Andrew Keen interviews prominent thinkers, writers, politicians, technologists, and business leaders who enlighten and challenge us as we seek the answers to How to Fix Democracy.
In this episode, host Andrew Keen sits down with Walter Scheidel, the Dickason Professor in the Humanities, Professor of Classics and History, and the Catherine R. Kennedy and Daniel L. Grossman Fellow in Human Biology at Stanford University. Scheidel specializes in the history of economic inequality, and his book The Great Leveler examines what forces have reduced economic inequality throughout history. Politicians and governments are often tasked with dealing with economic inequality today, but in reality, Scheidel says, societal collapse, epidemics, war, and communist revolutions do it much better. Listen to hear what this means today for a route to economic fairness in America and Europe, and what impact the coronavirus pandemic could have.