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What on Earth is Going on? is a podcast for the curious, where small talk is banned and tangents are prized. Strap yourself in for genuine dialogues with people who think deeply and are ready to tackle the big questions, such as broadcaster Terry O'Reilly, economist Miles Corak and journalist Jessica Vomiero.

Join Ben Charland to peel back the headlines and ask, what are the forces, people and ideas that shape the human story today? Have things always been this nuts, or are they getting crazier by the day? From the Mafia to the Beavertonwomen in politics to women in leadershiphistory to artificial intelligence, and entrepreneurship in the digital age to the art of wheelchair fencing, just what on Earth is going on?

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Oct 11, 2019

What makes an election work? Is it the technology aggregates our preferences? Is it trust that our choices will be fairly counted, that they have an impact? Is it the institutions that manage the voting process? Or is it, ultimately, the people we elect and whether or not they choose to respect the process? What happens to our democracy when these components are stretched and strained?

Ben chats with Holly Ann Garnett, political scientist and elections expert at the Royal Military College of Canada.

About the Guest

Holly Ann Garnett is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at the Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston, Ontario, and cross-appointed faculty at Queen’s University, in Kingston, Ontario, Canada.

Her research examines how electoral integrity can be strengthened throughout the electoral cycle, including electoral management, registration and voting procedures, election technology and cyber-security, civic literacy and campaign finance. She is a co-convener of the Electoral Management Network, and contributes to the Electoral Integrity Project.

Holly Ann was an Endeavour Research Fellow at The Australian National University (2017), a visiting fellow at the Åbo Akademi, Finland (2017), a visiting researcher at the University of Sydney (2014), and a Killam Fellow at Cornell University (2009).

She completed her PhD in Political Science at McGill University (2017), where she was a student member of the Centre for the Study of Democratic Citizenship. She is also a proud alumna of Queen’s University (MA in Political Studies, 2011) and Nipissing University (BA (Hon) in History and Political Science, 2010).

Learn more about Holly or follow her on Twitter (@HollyAnnGarnett).

Mentioned in this Episode

The Quote of the Week

"When people put their ballots in the boxes, they are, by that act, inoculated against the feeling that the government is not theirs. They then accept, in some measure, that its errors are their errors, its aberrations their aberrations, that any revolt will be against them. It's a remarkably shrewd and rather conservative arrangement when one thinks of it."
- John Kenneth Galbraith (1908-2006), Canadian-born economist