Held on 19-20 June 2017

Politics across the world is in tumult. A new populism has emerged from both left and right. Globalisation is under attack. Across every continent, electorates have lost patience with the establishment elites who have traditionally run countries and international institutions. The ‘left behind’ are stepping forward.

In 2017, the Blavatnik School of Government’s annual Challenges of Government Conference focused on this revolution: the breakdown in trust, the reasons behind it, and what an effective response might look like. Those taking part include global leaders and practitioners who are striving daily to address the crisis, as well as leading academics who will set out their latest cutting-edge ideas.

Watch a summary of insights from the conference below, and watch the full sessions on YouTube.

Key themes
  • Bridging the economic gap – how can we fix capitalism? – do we need to rethink the current rules of the game, including on regulation, theory of the firm and the model of stakeholder value?
  • The future of work and income – how do we resolve growing unemployment and inequality in the context of technological progress and the acceleration of robotics?
  • A societal role for Corporates - what can society fairly expect of multinational corporations in a world that they increasingly dominate?
  • Bridging the political gap – renovating politics – is rising populism a harbinger of democratic decay or an opportunity for developing a more responsive politics?
  • Inclusive nationalism and narratives of citizenship – how do we balance the rights of citizenship and recognise national ‘belonging’ and ensure societal cohesiveness?
  • Engaging citizens through political communication – What role can and should political communication play in bridging the gap between citizens and elites?
Public Service
  • Bridging the delivery gap – meeting citizens’ expectations – how do we reconnect with citizens who are increasingly fed up with unresponsive public services?
  • A new set of public service values – how do we retain the best and brightest in the public sector and what should our public-sector values be?
  • Professionalism for performance – innovative public management - how do we get governments institutions to become more agile and effective?
Speakers and session chairs
  • Nana Kwasi Agyekum Dwamena, Head of Civil Service, Ghana
  • Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, Founder and Chairman, Africa Initiative for Governance
  • Eric Beinhocker, Executive Director, INET Oxford, University of Oxford
  • Eric Braverman, President, Eric and Wendy Schmidt Group
  • Dr Geraldine Buckingham, Global Head of Corporate Strategy, BlackRock
  • Koushik Chatterjee, Group Executive Director (Finance and Corporate), Tata Steel
  • Professor Sir Paul Collier, Professor of Economics and Public Policy, Blavatnik School of Government
  • Professor Pepper Culpepper, Professor of Politics and Public Policy, Blavatnik School of Government
  • Jonathan Day, Vice Chairman, Tapestry Networks
  • Professor Stefan Dercon, Professor of Economic Policy, Blavatnik School of Government
  • Tim Dixon, Co-Founder, Purpose Europe
  • Senator Russell Feingold, Former US Senator from Wisconsin
  • Dr David Fine, Senior Partner, McKinsey & Company
  • Professor Archon Fung, Academic Dean and Ford Foundation Professor of Democracy and Citizenship, Harvard Kennedy School
  • Dr Thomas Hale, Associate Professor in Public Policy (Global Public Policy), Blavatnik School of Government
  • Professor Arlie Russell Hochschild, Professor Emerita, University of California at Berkeley
  • Dr Emily Jones, Associate Professor in Public Policy (Global Economic Governance), Blavatnik School of Government
  • Kate Josephs, Director of National Operations, Academies Regional Delivery Group, UK Department for Education
  • Dr Donald Kaberuka, Co-Chair, Commission on State Fragility, Growth and Development
  • Professor Robert Klitgaard, University Professor, Claremont Graduate University
  • Dr Clare Leaver, Associate Professor of Economics and Public Policy, Blavatnik School of Government
  • Hon Leany Barreiro de Sousa Lemos, Secretary of State for Planning, Budget and Management, Brasilia
  • Nick Lovegrove, Partner, Brunswick
  • Thulisile (Thuli) N. Madonsela, Chief Patron, Thuli Madonsela Foundation
  • Professor Anandi Mani, Professor of Behavioural Economics and Public Policy, Blavatnik School of Government
  • Tarek Mansour, Partner, McKinsey & Company
  • Frank Mattern, Senior Partner, McKinsey & Company
  • Professor Colin Mayer CBE FBA, Peter Moores Professor of Management Studies, Saïd Business School, University of Oxford
  • Calum Miller, Chief Operating Officer, Blavatnik School of Government
  • Dr Geoff Mulgan CBE, Chief Executive, Nesta
  • Patrick O'Flynn, UK Independence Party MEP
  • Swati Ramanathan, Co-founder, Jana Group
  • Professor Karthik Ramanna, Professor of Business and Public Policy, Blavatnik School of Government
  • Theresa Reno-Weber, President and CEO, Metro United Way
  • Professor Louise Richardson AAS ACSS FRSE RIIA, Vice-Chancellor, University of Oxford
  • Professor Bo Rothstein, Professor of Government and Public Policy, Blavatnik School of Government
  • Dr Yinbiao Shu, Chairman, State Grid Corporation of China
  • Hu Shuli, Editor-in-Chief, Caixin Media
  • Dr Thomas Simpson, Associate Professor of Philosophy and Public Policy, Blavatnik School of Government
  • Dr Bryan Stevenson, Founder and Executive Director, Equal Justice Initiative
  • Dr Damian Tambini, Research Director, Department of Media and Communications, LSE
  • Professor Yuli Tamir, Former Minister of Immigrant Absorption and Education, Israel
  • Dr Maya Tudor, Associate Professor of Government and Public Policy, Blavatnik School of Government
  • Dr Martin Williams, Associate Professor in Public Management, Blavatnik School of Government
  • Professor Jonathan Wolff, Blavatnik Professor of Public Policy, Blavatnik School of Government
  • Professor Ngaire Woods, Dean, Blavatnik School of Government