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How to Fix Democracy with Paul Sparrow








Since its origins, democracy has been a work in progress. Today, many question its resilience. The Bertelsmann Foundation, Institute for Canadian Citizenship, and Humanity in Action have teamed up with Andrew Keen, author of How to Fix the Future, for How to Fix Democracy: a video and podcast series exploring practical responses to the threats facing democracies around the world. Host Andrew Keen interviews prominent thinkers, writers, politicians, technologists, and business leaders who enlighten and challenge us as we seek the answers to How to Fix Democracy.

How to Fix Democracy Season 5 covers 100 years of American democracy between 1924 and 2024. The season uncovers the complexities of U.S. history and asks our distinguished guests why it remains the most iconic and yet misunderstood democratic system in the world. This season is brought to you by the Bertelsmann Foundation and Humanity in Action.

The fifth episode of this season features Paul Sparrow, former Director of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum, who speaks with Andrew Keen about the immense challenges and legacies of FDR and his administration.

Sparrow maintains that Roosevelt saved American democracy from an existential crisis caused by the Great Depression and the failure of previous administrations to provide for the welfare of the public. In the episode, Sparrow delves into the deep complexities of the 32nd U.S. President who employed the powerful resources of his mind and personality. (Listen | Watch)

Paul Sparrow is a writer, historical consultant, and the former Director of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum. Before moving to the FDR Library, he was the Deputy Director and Senior Vice President for Broadcasting and New Media at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. He was a founding partner in the University of Maryland’s Future of Information Alliance and a pioneer in interactive digital media. Prior to his work at the Newseum, Sparrow was an Emmy-Award winning television producer, and showrunner for Discovery, TLC, Fox, and PBS. He began his television career at KPIX, the CBS affiliate in San Francisco.

This series is made possible with the kind support of the William H. Donner Foundation. Find more episodes here.