Tackling the issue of political distrust in election year

Massey University associate professor Grant Duncan said economic and technological changes are having a flow-on effect ...
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Massey University associate professor Grant Duncan said economic and technological changes are having a flow-on effect to politics.

Do you still trust in the political process? 

And how might that affect your voting in the September election?

The issue of trust and distrust, viewed through a political lens, is one Massey University associate professor Grant Duncan thinks is worth discussing, especially in an election year. 

He and two colleagues will be leading the latest public lecture, 'Trust, distrust and the end of politics are we knew it' - the third in a series organised by the university's college of humanities and social sciences.

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Duncan said the theme was particularly salient and came from a desire to reflect on recent national and international events. 

"Any election is about trust, but I think that's particularly true at the moment."

While not wanting to cast predictions, Duncan said he frames his discussion in terms of the question of political trust and distrust, exploring factors that might affect New Zealand in the upcoming election. 

He examines the country's political history from 1890 onwards and aims to highlight transformative moments, such as the establishment of a two-party duopoly and shift to MMP voting. 

Duncan also asks whether the effect of MMP and influences from trends overseas will draw the country into a more fragmented political landscape. 

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He said a changing economic system, new technologies and access to information has meant a flow-on effect to the political sphere, leading to questions about political legitimacy and expertise. 

"The nature of democracy is being shifted and no one really knows where it's leading."

Stepping back and looking at the system as a whole, he suggests, needs to happen regardless of party affiliation. 

Dr Warwick Tie will also be speaking on the perceived shift from class allegiances to the contest between nationalist interests versus globalisation.

A question and answer session will be chaired by Dr Damien Rogers.

'Trust, distrust and the end of politics are we knew it' is at Massey University Albany campus on June 1, 6-7.30pm. 

 - North Harbour News

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