Without information, democracy cannot exist. We are being confronted with the emergence of new forms of power – economic powers – that largely escape traditional democratic mechanisms and counter-powers (including the media): transnational corporations. They are having an increasing influence on the world, on our lives and our societies, but we – ordinary citizens, civil society and even public authorities – often lack the relevant information that is required to prompt a genuine democratic discussion on their power, formulate adequate strategies and regulations, and imagine alternative solutions.
Democratic Information in an Age of Corporate Power, the latest issue of the Passerelle series, explores the many issues around the production and dissemination of “democratic information” on corporations, for the benefit of citizens and society at large. The articles in this collection outline the many obstacles that hinder the production of such information (trade secrets, the repression of whistleblowers, media concentration, to name just a few) and illustrate the limitations of transparency mechanisms and reporting obligations that transnational corporations are currently subjected to – i.e., tax systems, lobbying, public subsidies and product labelling.
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