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Solidarity and Social Cohesion

Trust and Absence of Corruption

Thursday 24 May at 13.15-14.45

The Nordic countries enjoy the highest levels of trust in the world today. In Denmark, for example, more than three out of four people surveyed confirmed that “most other people” could indeed be trusted. In fact, ‘Getting to Denmark’ has lately become a metaphoric catch phrase for the long-term goal of building well-functioning, uncorrupted and rich states. Denmark has been used as a paradigm for countries with high levels of trust in combination with low levels of corruption. Similar results have been found in the other Nordic countries. Yet, it is a great puzzle how states reach this stage and international comparisons are needed. Thus, this workshop will in particular explore the link between the welfare state, trust and absence of corruption, also from a comparative perspective.

Workshop participants:

Mette Frisk Jensen, Director, PhD, Danmarkshistorien.dk
How Denmark got to be Denmark - establishing rule of law and curbing corruption in Denmark 1660-1900.

Francisco Herreros, professor, Spanish National Research Council, Madrid, Spain:
Is it corruption, equality or state efficacy? An enquiry into the roots of trust and distrust.

Peter Graeff, Professor, Kiel University, Germany
Social capital in Germany: Mechanisms of trust and deviance

Natalia Letki, Associate Professor, The Institute of Sociology, University of Warsaw
Trust and corruption in Eastern Europe: An ambiguous relationship

The workshop is organized by Gert Tinggaard Svendsen, Department of Political Science, Aarhus University, e-mail: gts@ps.au.dk , Tel: +45 8716 5693


The Blind Eye of the Welfare State: Growing Inequalities in Political Representation

Thursday 24 May at 15.15-16.45

A central purpose of welfare state arrangements is to alleviate the consequences of social inequality. One important aspect hereof pertains to inequalities in political representation – both in terms of the social composition of those elected and the policies that are implemented. However, recent research from a range of countries, including Denmark, show that even in long-standing welfare states political representation is becoming increasingly unequal – to the benefit of the most resourceful members of society. The seminar addresses this vexing issue by discussing the extent and consequences of socially unequal political representation, particularly in Western Europe. The participants are all leading experts in the field and have done work spanning a range of West European countries.

Workshop participants:

Mark Bovens, Utrecht University
Diploma democracy: How Europe's political elites have become educational elites

Oliver Heath, Royal Holloway, University of London:
Responses to changing patterns of political representation in the UK: an elite-mass comparison

Helene Helboe Pedersen, Aarhus University:
A representative political elite in Denmark? Social characteristics and attitudes

Anchrit Wille, Leiden University
The education gap in political participation

The workshop is organized by Rune Stubager, Professor, Department of Political Science, Aarhus University, e-mail: stubager@ps.au.dk , phone:  +45 8716 5694