Skip to main content

Please note: this event has passed

What factors drive political turmoil and societal breakdown? How do elites sustain their dominance, and why do ruling classes occasionally lose their hold on power?

Peter Turchin, an expert in researching the origins of political instability, uncovers a recurring trend. When the scales of power heavily favour the ruling elite, it leads to a surge in income inequality, enriching the wealthy and impoverishing the less privileged. As more individuals aspire to join the elite, dissatisfaction with the established order intensifies, often resulting in calamity.

Join the Policy Institute and the Fairness Foundation for a conversation about political upheaval, inequality, and the historical lessons we can glean. Are we truly living in "End Times," or can history provide a glimmer of optimism for breaking free from past cycles?


  • Mary Harrington, Author and contributing editor at UnHerd 
  • Gerry Mitchell, Social policy researcher, writer, community activist and co-author of 'Uncomfortably Off: Why the Top 10% of Earners Should Care about Inequality'
  • Will Snell, Chief Executive, the Fairness Foundation (Chair)
  • Paul Summerville, Adjunct Professor, Gustavson School of Business at the University of Victoria and co-author of 'Reclaiming Populism: How Economic Fairness Can Win Back Disenchanted Voters'
  • Peter Turchin, Complexity Scientist, one of the founders of Cliodynamics and author of The Times thought book of the year, 'End Times: Elites, counter-elites and the path of political disintegration' 

Event details