I am currently a Lecturer at Stanford University, teaching courses in political theory, democracy, and justice. I was previously a Postdoctoral Research Associate at Princeton University in the University Center for Human Values and the Program in Values and Public Life. Before coming to Princeton, I received my Ph.D with distinction in political science from Brown University and my A.B. from the Committee on Degrees in Social Studies at Harvard University. My research and teaching in political theory focus on democratic theory, economic justice, global justice, and the history of political thought (esp. Kant, Locke, and Madison). I have multiple refereed publications, including a forthcoming article accepted at the Journal of Politics, an article published in the Review of International Political Economy, a chapter in the Routledge Handbook of Global Economic Governance, and a review article on Rawls and the justice of corporate governance in the Business Ethics Journal Review.
My book project, Answering to Us: The Right to Democratic Accountability, addresses the global crisis in democracy. In many countries, governments are attacking the rule of law, undermining freedom of dissent, and persecuting minorities. Yet they claim to be democratic, because they hold elections that are said to represent the will of the people. At the global level, democracy is in decline as more decisions are made in unaccountable foreign states and international organizations. Democracy is thought to apply only to the state's relation to its own citizens, and not to global decisions.
In Answering to Us, I argue for a conception of democracy that places greater emphasis on the importance of accountability. In my equal accountability theory, democracy ought to be viewed as a form of government that answers to the diverse persons it rules as equals. To be accountable, governments must respect the rule of law, justify decisions in inclusive deliberation, and recognize the equal rights of minorities. I show that democratic accountability is owed as a human right, and this right is crucial to defending democracy from elected authoritarians. Drawing on Kant and Habermas, I demonstrate that because democratic accountability is owed to all of the people who are subject to decisions, it must be extended to the global policies of states and international organizations. I explain how this is possible while avoiding the infeasibility of world government and the insularity of strictly national democracy. The equal accountability theory of democracy that I develop in my book recaptures the value of democracy from the challenges of authoritarianism and globalization.
My second area of research concerns the justice of the global financial system. Many theorists of global justice have focused on international trade. The fairness of the global financial system, however, tends to be overlooked, even though it greatly affects economic inequality. For example, the dollar's privilege as the international reserve currency results in a wealth transfer from poor countries to the United States that exceeds the value of all development assistance and foreign aid, according to the UN Commission of Financial Experts. Drawing on both normative political theory and empirical political economy, my research asks how the global financial system can be structured more fairly to satisfy principles of distributive justice. This work builds on my publications, including my article for the Review of International Political Economy and my book chapter in the Routledge Handbook of Global Economic Governance.
|Minh Ly August 2018 CV||329 KB|