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Public lectures by Margaret Levi during her visit in Uppsala

2019-09-15 by Michal Smrek

Margaret Levi, Sara Miller McCune Director of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences (CASBS), Professor of Political Science, and Senior Fellow at the Woods Institute for the Environment at Stanford University; and also Jere L. Bacharach Professor Emerita of International Studies in the Department of Political Science at the University of Washington, will be awarded the 2019 Johan Skytte Prize in Political Science on September 28, 2019. During her stay in Uppsala, Professor Levi will deliver two lectures to which the members of the public are cordially invited. The abstracts for both lectures can be found at the end of this article.


The first lecture entitled: “Expanded Communities of Fate” will take place on September 27 starting at 13:15 and will be held in Brusewitz Hall, Department of Government, Uppsala University. Prof. Levi will hold a talk for approximately 45 minutes which will be followed by a discussion lasting up to 30 minutes. Everyone is welcome to take part in the discussion. This lecture is open to the staff, students as well as the general public. Please make sure to arrive 15 minutes ahead of the advertised starting time to make sure you get a seat.
The second lecture: “People and Governance”, will take place on September 28 starting at 17:30 and will be held in Hall X at the Main University Building. This is the traditional prize winner’s lecture that takes 30 minutes and no questions are entertained. As per custom, the prize winner’s lecture is open to the wide public. There is no admission fee. Arrive in good time to secure a seat.

Summary of the lectures:
September 27, 13:15-15:00: Expanded Communities of Fate (Brusewitz Hall, Department of Government): A community of fate encompasses those with whom individuals come to perceive their own interests as bound and with whom they are willing to act in solidarity. This can be as narrow as the family or as expanded as all those want to mitigate the consequences of climate change. After discussing and elaborating the concept and the conditions for the emergence of an expanded community of fate among some labor unions in the United States and Australia, the seminar will begin to explore how to transport and scale this model to other settings.

September 28, 17:30-18:00: Prize Winner’s Lecture: People and Governance (Hall X, Main University Building): Why do individuals willingly comply with the demands of governments and leaders, especially when those demands are costly? The history of the state is a history of finding the right balance of reciprocal obligations between citizens and their governments. When governments provide for the material wants, security, and rights of their people, citizens are more likely to comply with law without being coerced. They are also more likely to engage in self-sacrifice. Over history, states evolved and democracies expanded suffrage and social protections as leaders learn these lessons. As has happened regularly in the past, it is again time to generate governance and economic institutions attuned to the era in which we now live.