Book Launch: Rethinking Party Reform by Fabio Wolkenstein
The functioning of representative democracy crucially depends on political parties that mediate between citizens and the state. It is widely doubted, however, that contemporary parties can still perform this connective role. Taking seriously the ensuing challenges for representative democracy, Rethinking Party Reform advances a normative account of party reform, drawing on both democratic theory and political science scholarship on parties. Moving beyond purely descriptive or causal-analytical perspectives on party reform, the book clarifies on theoretical grounds why party reform is centrally important for the sustainability of established democracies, and what effective party reforms could look like in an age where most citizens look to parties with scepticism and distrust. In doing so, this book underlines in distinctive fashion why scholars and citizens should care about re-inventing and transforming political parties, resisting widespread tendencies of either declaring parties unreformable or theorising them out of the picture.

Fabio Wolkenstein is Assistant Professor in Political Science at Aarhus University and Affiliated Researcher in Political Theory at the University of Amsterdam. His work has appeared in the American Political Science Review, European Journal of Political Research, Journal of Political Philosophy, Political Theory, Political Studies, Journal of Common Market Studies, Politics, Philosophy and Economics, and the European Journal of Political Theory.
Date: 22 January 2020, 16:00 (Wednesday, 1st week, Hilary 2020)
Venue: Jesus College, Turl Street OX1 3DW
Venue Details: Memorial Room
Speakers: Fabio Wolkenstein (Aarhus University), Alasia Nuti (University of York), Stuart White (University of Oxford), Paolo Gerbaodo (KCL)
Booking required?: Not required
Audience: Public
Editor: Holly Omand