Democracy in the Digital Age

How we'll vote and what we'll vote about

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Costa Vayenas
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£12.99, US$ 20.99, €18.60
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About The Author

Costa Vayenas lives in Switzerland, where ordinary citizens are called upon to be legislators. He has voted in over 200 legislative proposals at all three levels of government: local, cantonal and federal. The insights he gained from this process have been useful in his professional life as an investment analyst. Asset prices, after all, are also a function of how well a country is governed. He is the editor of an 800-page book on the emerging markets (Bloomsbury). He was Head of Research for the emerging markets at UBS, and has worked as an analyst in London, New York and Zurich. One of his reports was cited in The Financial Times as having triggered a currency crisis. Another featured on the front page of The Wall Street Journal under “What’s News”. He has lectured at the University of Zurich and has been a guest lecturer at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology. It was an invitation to speak at the latter’s Institute of Science, Technology and Policy that was the trigger for this book, which describes how democracy is being disrupted by digitalization and the profound consequences of that disruption.

About The Book

This book addresses the profound change that modern technology has the capacity to make in democracy itself. While very little has changed in the machinery of the representative system since the late 1700s, that arrangement is starting to unravel. The technology by which the people receive their information and make their will known, is being revolutionized.

These new technological capabilities are likely to reinforce a powerful development that was already under way: an unprecedented rise in referendums and petitions across the globe. Technology now holds the capacity to transfer more power directly to the people, including on the all-important questions of how the state taxes and spends.

This book has been written by an experienced analyst who worked in the financial centres in London, New York and Zurich. His research is based on a careful analysis of the data and a deep understanding of the likely financial consequences of these trends.

It is by drawing on the evidence from diverse fields – politics, economics, finance and information technology – and by describing that evidence in laymen’s terms, that this book unlocks original insights into where these trends might be leading.