Timing: 09:00 - 17:15

Conference: Democratic capitalism and its discontents

Conference: Democratic capitalism and its discontents

Registration is closed


The all-too-common assertion that the world is in a big mess reflects different facets of the current crisis. It demonstrates the existence of a triple crisis among the major institutions of governance, within the State, the Market, and the Community. This crisis has led to the hollowing out of public institutions, electoral volatility, and exit from normal politics; the de-institutionalization of markets, rising profits and to this day unknown levels of inequality; individualization, break-down of hitherto stable networks, and different forms of anomie.

The workshop brings together a number of prominent participants from the disciplines of political science, political economy and political sociology to that debate and is concerned with solving some of the puzzles currently bewildering members of academia and the wider community.

  • How are the three dimensions of the crisis related to each other and which is the one likely to account for the most significant changes in political, economic, and social life?
  • How do the effects of the crisis materialize in terms of changing motives, worldviews, believes, interests, concerns, and feelings of belonging?
  • Are we currently witnessing the emergence of something tentatively labelled “Precarity” – a situation embracing the entire range of political, economic and societal discontent?
  • Is it this particular precarious condition, or are there cultural factors and different forms of identity politics determining whether discontent is ultimately becoming manifest in organized form by following a “real-utopian” (E.O. Wright) as opposed to a “retrotopian” (Z. Bauman) route?

The assemble participants will discuss these questions by focussing on the relationship between the precarious parts of the workforce, established trade union associations, social and protest movements, as much as forms of democracy as they exist in both the West and the East.


Jürgen Grote (DOC Research Institute, Berlin, Germany)

Donatella Della Porta (Scuola Normale Superiore, Florence, Italy)

Fréderic Royall (University of Limerick, Limerick, Republic of Ireland)

Lawrence Cox (National University of Ireland, Kildare, Republic of Ireland)

Richard Hyman (London School of Economics and Political Science, UK)

Rebecca Gumbrell-McCormick (Birbeck College, London, UK)

Noelle Burgi (Centre de sociologie et de science politique, Paris, France)

Kevin Doogan (University of Bristol, Bristol, UK)

Beverley Silver (Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, USA)

Stefan Schmalz (University of Jena, Germany)

Philippe Schmitter (European University Institute, Florence, Italy)

Claus Offe (Hertie School of Governance, Berlin, Germany)

Martin Potucek (Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic)

Marianna Zielonska (University of Warsaw, Poland)

Attendance is by prior registration only.

Berlin, Germany

Französische Straße 23

To register please contact:

Adrienne Szabo: event@doc-research.org

For Media inquiries:

Agnieszka Rzepka: Arzepka@doc-research.org