Artwork for Democracy Works

Democracy Works

Penn State McCourtney Institute for Democracy

The Democracy Works podcast seeks to answer that question by examining a different aspect of democratic life each week — from voting to criminal justice to the free press and everything in between. We interview experts who study democracy, as well as people who are out there doing the hard work of democracy day in and day out. The show’s name comes from Pennsylvania’s long tradition of iron and steel works — people coming together to build things greater than the sum of their parts. We believe that democracy is the same way. Each of us has a role to play in building and sustaining a healthy democracy and our show is all about helping people understand what that means. Democracy Works is part of The Democracy Group, a network of podcasts that examines what’s broken in our democracy and how we can work together to fix it.


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Latest Episodes

It's no secret that there's a partisan divide in the media, but thus far, solutions to bridge that divide have been few and far between. Our guest this week had an idea that seems to be taking hold and building a readership across the political spect... more

14 days ago

Jake Grumbach's book "Laboratories against Democracy: How National Parties Transformed State Politics" is out now from Princeton University Press. We were lucky enough to receive and advance copy and are rebroadcasting our conversation with him from ... more

a month ago

From COVID-19 policies to reproductive rights, conversations about freedom and liberty seem to be front and center in politics and the culture wars. This week, we take a deep dive into the philosophical underpinnings of these concepts and how differe... more

2 months ago


4.7 out of 5 stars from 70 ratings
  • Food for thought

    This show approaches each topic from a thoughtful POV and offers up perspectives from people who have expert knowledge. They don’t hammer a point or yell and rant, but instead discuss and deliberate. A perfect example of how democracy works by Democracy Works!

    Apple Podcasts
    United Statesa year ago
  • Leader in Podcasts on Democracy

    Jenna has been a large help for my own podcast, Democracy Paradox. Her leadership of the Democracy Group has influenced many democracy podcasts. Eternal thanks to her contours work!

    Apple Podcasts
    justin kempf
    United States2 years ago
  • Deep Analysis; Better Than Anything on Mainstream

    I appreciate this group’s analysis, as it seeks to understand our political culture dispassionately and not to fan the outrage we see in shoddy and “clickbait” journalism.

    Apple Podcasts
    United States2 years ago
  • More than just politics!

    The Democracy Works podcast is a great snapshot of our country and how the workings of the government influences each of us as Americans. Jenna Spinelle is always on point bringing thought provoking content to her listeners with every episode.

    Apple Podcasts
    United States2 years ago
  • Timely and Authoritative

    The Democracy Works podcast adds much needed perspectives to the public discourse. It is both timely and authoritative, lifting up some of the best voices in the field and making them accessible to the general public.

    Apple Podcasts
    United States2 years ago

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#178 Ireland/Government
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Frequently Asked Questions About Democracy Works

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How many listeners does Democracy Works get?

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How many episodes of Democracy Works are there?

Democracy Works launched 4 years ago and published 680 episodes to date. You can find more information about this podcast including rankings, audience demographics and engagement in our podcast database.

How do I contact Democracy Works?

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