John Latham - Cluster11

"Democracy is the precondition for the full application of human intelligence to addressing social problems" (Putnam)

Hierarchy: A Field Manual, seeks to recover dynamic and anarchic forms of democracy and to help groups survive and flourish in in conditions of economic, social and political degeneration. The Manual presents visual and psychological aids, robust concepts, historical examples and organisational innovation for democratic operatives in the field. 

Ricardo Blaug is Reader (~Associate Professor) in Democracy and Political Philosophy at the University of Westminster’s Centre for the Study of Democracy in London, UK. A qualified Psychiatric Social Worker and award-winning author and teacher, he has worked as an emergency psychiatric clinician, public sector manager and political philosopher in the UK, the US and the Netherlands. Ricardo studies Political Psychology, Philosophy and  the psychological politics of institutional life.

This research explores the interaction between organisational structures (hierarchies; markets; networks; democracy) and constructions of meaning (social cognition; ideology; reification; sense of self). By re-examining classic political concerns (corruption by power, democratic organisation; public engagement; ideological deception) with contemporary psychological tools, the attempt is to contribute to an emerging critical and multi-disciplinary approach to questions in political psychology.

Both academic and practical, this research is conducted with a range of scholars, students and public and voluntary organisations. Ricardo teaches modules in Political Theory and Political Psychology at the University of Wesminster's Department of Politics and International Relations. He has supervised sixteen completed PhDs and facilitates student-led initiatives in international and community-based learning (The Democratic Education Network). 

Ricardo has a BA in Psychology, an MA (PhD ABD) in Social, Political and Recent Continental Philosophy from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, USA and a Postgraduate Professional Diploma in Social Work (CQSW) from Goldsmith's College, London. His doctoral research in Political Theory was conducted at Manchester University's Departments of Government. Before Joining Westminster's CSD, he was senior lecturer at the University of Leeds and a visiting scholar at Leiden University in the Netherlands.