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Conférence: "Inward Conquest, or The Origins of Public Services" avec Johannes Lindall

In the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, states introduced most of the public services we now take for granted, such as policing, schooling, and public health. But those services were governed very differently in different countries, and at different points in time. In this presentation I will focus on Montreal and Gothenburg in Sweden. Both cities introduced modern public services in the nineteenth century. But these services emerged in very different political, social, and religious environments, which is why they were all governed differently in Montreal and Gothenburg.In comparing them, I place them in the wider context of the expansion of public services in his period in nineteen countries in Western Europe, North America, and the Asia-Pacific region. In our book, "Inward Conquest, or The Origins of Public Services" Ben Ansell and I write about two conflicts: over the vertical distribution of power among localities, regions, and central authorities, and over the horizontal distribution of power among secular authorities, churches, and voluntary associations. We show that there were two paths to centralization: on the one hand an authoritarian path, on the other hand a progressive, democratic path. In other words, the conflict over the vertical distribution of power was shaped primarily by the political regime and by the identity of the parties or groups that controlled the government. But the conflict over the horizontal distribution of power was largely a religious conflict, reflecting the religious composition of the population and the institutional role of the church, or churches. A mix under which public services are provided, in part, by private organizations was most common in countries where several religious groups lived side by side. These findings have important implications for contemporary conflicts over public services.


Organisé par la Chaire de recherche en études électorales et la Chaire de recherche du Canada en démocratie électorale.


DATE : Mardi 3 septembre, 12h-13h


LIEU : Pavillon Lionel-Groulx, salle C-4145