SXSW 2024

In Government We Distrust


Global pandemics, inflation, and widespread natural disasters demonstrate the necessary role of the federal government in American life. Yet most Americans are skeptical about its ability to work in their best interest, protect their rights and tackle crucial problems.
We will discuss the underlying causes of systemic distrust; the harmful implications of Americans not relying on the government; and the ways political leaders, including presidential administrations, presidential candidates and members of Congress, can rebuild trust in our democratic systems.

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  1. What has our research revealed about the American public’s perceptions, knowledge, and expectations of government; and what drives them?
  2. Why does distrust in government generate real harm to American democracy and the U.S. government's ability to carry out its crucial mission?
  3. How do presidential candidates play a role in rebuilding trust in our democracy, including during the critical period of presidential transitions?



Maggie Moore, Senior Events Manager, Partnership for Public Service

Meta Information:

  • Event: SXSW
  • Format: Panel
  • Track: Government & Civic Engagement
  • Track 2
  • Level: Beginner

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