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DONALD MATTHEWS LECTURE - "Governance, politics and public policy in the face of rising authoritarianism"

Thursday, November 10, 2022
4:30 PM – 6:00 PM
Robert Sutherland Hall
Room: 202
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Margaret Biggs
Daniel Brant
Hugh Segal

Matthews Fellows in Global Public Policy

At a time where anti-democratic authoritarian forces around the world are gaining greater influence and control, how do proponents of liberal democracy, reconciliation and the international rules based order advance their cause?

In Canada, we need to be conscious of authoritarian colonialism in our own history as we address new international authoritarian threats. History should provide us lessons on what effects and consequences authoritarianism has on society. First Nations governments in our country have been subject to essentially an authoritarian regime via legal instruments such as the Indian Act since 1867. If we look at the impact of hegemonic controls on a society of people using First Nations as the example, the consequences are clear. The issue now is what have we learned and are we doomed to repeat it at a much larger scale and what are we prepared to learn from these lessons.

Looking outward, successive Canadian governments have placed the promotion of democracy and human rights at the core of Canadian foreign policy. However the history of promoting democracy in other countries has a mixed track record and tarnished reputation in some cases. What role can or should Canada play in supporting democractic forces abroad? What lessons have we learned from the past?

This panel will explore autocratic threats, at home and abroad, and potential Canadian responses.

Samantha Martin
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