The Role of the Nation State in a Global Networked Society


6th Floor, 680 Sherbrooke St. W., Montreal, H3A 3R1, CA

This talk by Mark Lloyd is part of our Fall 2019 Policy Lecture series. These academic talks are intended for McGill students and faculty.

The societies of the 21st Century are no longer dominated by the prerogatives of nation states. Though media headlines would suggest otherwise: Russia Interferes with Germany Election; Trump Threatens Canada with Tariffs, Saudi Warplanes Still Bomb Civilians in Yemen! Still, Apple’s exportation of manufacturing jobs to the global south and east, the migration of embattled populations from the south to the north, the global influence of Hollywood, as well as social media disruption in Britain and India suggest something else is afoot. If only considering the latest United Nations report on global climate change, we are clearly a more networked society. Given the U.S. vulnerability to Murdoch’s News Corporation and Zuckerberg’s Facebook, what could smaller, less powerful nation states such as New Zealand or Indonesia or Canada possibly do? Is the nation state irrelevant in a global networked society? If not, what role can and should the nation state play, particularly regarding communication?

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About Mark Lloyd

Mark Lloyd is a professor of practice in the Max Bell School of Public Policy at McGill University. He is also a Clinical Professor at the University of Southern California-Annenberg School of Communication, teaching in both the Communication School and the Journalism School and he manages the Consortium on Media Policy Studies (COMPASS) summer fellowship program in Washington, DC.

From 2009-2012 he served as an associate general counsel at the Federal Communications Commission, advising the Commission on how to promote diverse participation in the communications field with a focus on research into critical information needs and broadband adoption by low-income populations. His other government service includes time on the Clinton Transition Team, and working in the personnel office of the Clinton White House, focusing on the National Council for the Arts and advising the domestic policy office on the relationship between arts and commerce and public diplomacy.

Prior to joining the FCC, Mr. Lloyd was the vice president for strategic initiatives at the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights/Education Fund, where, among other duties, he led a national campaign to assist the most vulnerable communities make the successful transition to digital television service. He was also the Director of the Media Policy Initiative at New America, a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress, and the Director of a research and advocacy institute he co-founded, The Civil Rights Forum on Communication Policy.

Previously Mr. Lloyd has been the General Counsel of the Benton Foundation, and an attorney at the DC law firm Dow, Lohnes & Albertson. Before becoming a communications lawyer, he was a an Emmy award-winning broadcast journalist, working for public and commercial radio and television, including time at NBC and CNN.

Mr. Lloyd’s academic career includes two years as a visiting scholar at MIT, and several years teaching communication policy at the Georgetown University Public Policy Institute. The author of numerous popular and academic articles and essays, his book Prologue to a Farce, Communication and Democracy in America was published by the University of Illinois Press in 2007, and The Communication Crisis in America, and How to Fix It, published by Palgrave/Macmillan in 2016.

Mr. Lloyd graduated from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor with a double major in journalism and political science, and from the Georgetown University Law Center.

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