Government and governance | Asia, East Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, The Pacific, The World, Australia

29 October 2020

From health concerns over obesity to drug dependency, governments have the power to creatively solve widespread societal problems. So why does the blame for these issues so often fall at the feet of individuals? Mark Kenny talks to Keith Dowding about his new book, It’s the Government, Stupid.

While individuals can and do make bad decisions, governments have the power to influence behaviour and tackle widespread societal issues – from the health issues associated with obesity to problem gambling. But has a cult of personal responsibility blinded us to recognising the responsibility that government has to act and respond? In this Democracy Sausage Extra, Professor Mark Kenny talks to Professor Keith Dowding about his new political philosophy book, It’s the Government, Stupid: How governments blame citizens for their own policies. Listen here:

Keith Dowding is Distinguished Professor of Political Science and Political Philosophy at The Australian National University’s College of Arts and Social Sciences.

Mark Kenny is a Professor in the ANU Australian Studies Institute. He came to the university after a high-profile journalistic career including six years as chief political correspondent and national affairs editor for The Sydney Morning HeraldThe Age, and The Canberra Times.

Democracy Sausage with Mark Kenny is available on Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. We’d love to hear your feedback for this podcast series! Send in your questions, comments, or suggestions for future episodes to You can also Tweet us @APPSPolicyForum or join us on the Facebook group.

This podcast is produced in partnership with The Australian National University.

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