Recent years have seen democratic governments face a variety of challenges
from both within and without. Endogenously, many established
democracies have become pockmarked by factionalism, polarization,
fearmongering, and populism. Exogenously, democratic institutions’ effectiveness
is now frequently called into question by the rise of autocratic
powers and a range of never-before-experienced global crises that have
exposed democracy’s many shortcomings. Against this backdrop there
have been widespread calls to ensure that democracies and their institutions
become more epistocratic and adept at including the interests of
aff ected individuals so that the factionalism and polarization leading to
populist backlashes can be averted.
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