Crowd Control: Economic Disruption and the Regulation of Mass Protest

Graduate Student Conference in Political Science, International Relations and Public Policy, December 2011

Suffolk University Law School Research Paper No. 11-54

13 Pages Posted: 25 Nov 2011 Last revised: 29 Nov 2011

See all articles by Alasdair S. Roberts

Alasdair S. Roberts

University of Massachusetts Amherst - School of Public Policy

Date Written: November 23, 2011

Abstract

Prepared for Seventh Graduate Student Conference in Political Science, International Relations and Public Policy at Hebrew University of Jerusalem on December 14-16, 2011. This is a preliminary precis for a new project about the regulation of protest in market democracies. It suggests that the process of global economic liberalization necessarily produces dislocation and heightens the risk of angry protest, which if poorly managed threatens political destabilization and a retreat from the project of liberalization itself. Over time, market democracies develop regulatory regimes -- constituted of rules, organizational capacities, and technologies -- for controlling mass protests. Regimes evolve in response to periodic "law and order" crises and also the shifting tactics of protesters themselves. Over time, regimes becoming increasingly stringent, so that the possibility of a "crowd politics" -- a kind of politics in which protests play a significant role in determining policy outcomes -- becomes increasingly remote.

Suggested Citation

Roberts, Alasdair S., Crowd Control: Economic Disruption and the Regulation of Mass Protest (November 23, 2011). Graduate Student Conference in Political Science, International Relations and Public Policy, December 2011; Suffolk University Law School Research Paper No. 11-54. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1963881

Alasdair S. Roberts (Contact Author)

University of Massachusetts Amherst - School of Public Policy ( email )

Thompson Hall
Amherst, MA 01003
United States
6175999029 (Phone)

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