Hélène Landemore

Hélène Landemore's picture
Associate Professor of Political Science, with Tenure


115 Prospect Street, Rosenkranz Hall, Room 305
1(203) 432-5824
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  • Ph.D., Political Science, Harvard University 2008
  • Master (with High Honors), Philosophy, Sorbonne-Paris I, 2001
  • Master (with High Honors), Political Science, Sciences-Po, Paris, 2000
  • Honorific, non-degree program in the Humanities, Ecole Normale Supérieure, Paris (Academic Merit scholarship), 1996-2000


Hélène Landemore is Associate Professor of Political Science, with Tenure. Her research and teaching interests include democratic theory, political epistemology, theories of justice, the philosophy of social sciences (particularly economics), constitutional processes and theories, and workplace democracy.

Her first book (in French) Hume. Probabilité et Choix Raisonnable (PUF: 2004) was a philosophical investigation of David Hume’s theory of decision-making. Her second book (in English) Democratic Reason won the Montreal Manuscript Workshop Award in 2011; the Elaine and David Spitz Prize in 2015; and the 2018 APSA “Ideas, Knowledge, and Politics” section book award. Hélène’s third book–Open Democracy: Reinventing Popular Rule for the 21st Century (under contract with Princeton University Press)–develops a new paradigm of democracy in which the exercise of power is as little gated as possible, even as it depends on representative structures to make it possible. In this version of popular rule, power is equally open to all, as opposed to just those who happen to stand out in the eyes of others (as in electoral democracies). The book centrally defends the use of non-electoral yet democratic forms of representation, including “lottocratic,” “self-selected,” and “liquid” representation.

Hélène has also co-edited a volume on Collective Wisdom: Principles and Mechanisms (Cambridge University Press 2012) with Jon Elster (Columbia University) and a volume on Digital Technology and Democratic Theory (Chicago University Press in productionwith Lucy Bernholz and Rob Reich (Stanford University).

Her articles have been published in, among others, Journal of Political PhilosophyPolitical TheoryPolitics, Philosophy, and EconomicsPolitical PsychologySocial Epistemology;  Synthese; the Swiss Review of Political Science; the Journal of Politics and International Journal of Constitutional Law

Her research has been featured in the New York Times, the Boston Review, Slate, the Washington Post, L’Humanité, Le Monde, and recently the New Yorker.

In the past Hélène has taught various courses, including “Introduction to Political Philosophy,” “Justice in Western Thought,” “Directed Studies,” “Beyond Representative Government,” “Deliberative Democracy and Beyond,” “Political Epistemology,” and “Political Authority.” In 2014 she won a National Endowment for the Humanities grant for her interdisciplinary lecture course “How Do We Choose, and Choose Well.” 

Hélène Landemore advised the Parliament of Finland on a crowdsourced policy-making reform in 2013 and the French Parliament on inclusive decision-making in 2018. She is currently serving as expert consultant for the French government on a committee evaluating the CESE (Economic, Social and Environmental Council)’s experimentation with randomly selected citizens.





  • Democratic Reason: Politics, Collective Intelligence, and the Rule of the Many (Princeton, Princeton University Press 2013)
  • Hume. Probabilité et choix raisonnable (Paris: PUF, 2004)
  • Edited volume: Collective Wisdom: Principles and Mechanisms (Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2012). First editor, with Jon Elster

Peer Reviewed Articles:

  • “When Public Participation Matters: the 2010-2013 Icelandic Constitutional Process,” International Journal of Constitutional Law, forthcoming
  • “Referendums Are Never Merely Referendums: On the Need to Make Popular Vote Processes More Deliberative.” Swiss Review of Political Science 24(3): 320–327, 2018
  • “Political Epistemology in the Age of Alternative Facts: On World-Building, Truth-Tracking, and Arendtian Vacillations in Linda Zerilli’s A Democratic Theory of Judgment,” Political Theory 46(4): 611-623, 2018
  • “Inclusive Constitution-Making and Religious Rights: Lessons from the Icelandic Experiment,” Journal of Politics 79(3): 762-779, 2017
  • “Beyond the Fact of Disagreement? The Epistemic Turn in Deliberative Democracy,” Journal of Social Epistemology, forthcoming  (accepted August 2016)
  • “Unmasking the Crowd: Participants’ Motivation Factors, Expectations, and Profile in a Crowdsourced Law Reform” (with Tanja Aitamurto and Jorge S. Galli), Information, Communication, and Society, forthcoming (accepted August 2016)
  • “Crowdsourced Deliberation: The Case of an Off-Traffic Law Reform in Finland” (with Tanja Aitamurto) Policy & Internet May 2016 DOI: 10.1002/poi3.115
  • “In Defense of Workplace Democracy: Toward a Justification of the Firm/State Analogy” (first author, with Isabelle Ferreras) Political Theory 44(1): 53-81, 2016
  • “Inclusive Constitution-Making: The Icelandic Experiment.” Journal of Political Philosophy 23(2): 166-191, 2015
  • “Deliberation and Disagreement: Problem Solving, Prediction, and Positive Dissensus” (with Scott E. Page). Philosophy, Politics, and Economics 14(3) : 229-254, 2015
  • “Neither Blind, nor Mute: Why the People Shouldn’t Give Up on the Voice.” Political Theory 42 (2): 192-197, 2014
  • “Reasoning is for Arguing: Explaining the Successes and Failures of Deliberation” (second author, with Hugo Mercier), Political Psychology 33: 243-, 2012
  • “Deliberation, Cognitive Diversity, and Democratic Inclusiveness: An Epistemic Argument for the Random Selection of Representatives.” Synthese 190(7): 1209-1231, 2012
  • “Politics and the Economist-King: Is Rational Choice Theory the Science of Choice?” Journal of Moral Philosophy 1.2, 2004: 185-207 

Classes taught - Undergraduate courses:

  • “Introduction to Political Philosophy” (lecture course), Fall 2017 and Fall 2018
  • “How do we choose, and choose well” (lecture course), Spring 2015 and Fall 2015
  • “Beyond Representative Government” (seminar), Spring 2014 and Fall 2015
  • “Directed Studies” (History & Politics), Spring 2011 and Spring 2012
  • “Justice in Western Thought” (lecture course), Fall 2009 and 2010
  • “Freedom” (seminar) Spring 2010

Classes taught -Graduate Courses:

  • “Political Epistemology” (graduate seminar), Spring 2018
  • “Deliberative Democracy and Beyond”, Spring 2010 and 2016
  • “Philosophy of Science for the Study of Politics”, co-taught with Ian Shapiro
  • “Research & Writing” (co-taught with Allan Dafoe), Fall 2013 and Spring 2014
  • “Introduction to Political Theory,” co-taught with Ian Shapiro
  • “Political Authority,” Spring 2011

Awards and Nominations:

  • 2018 - APSA “Ideas, Knowledge, and Politics” Best Book Award for Democratic Reason: Politics, Collective Intelligence, and the Rule of the Many (Princeton University Press 2013)
  • 2017 - Nominated for the Brown Medal of Democracy (second and final round)
  • 2015 - David and Elaine Spitz Prize (best book in liberal/democratic theory from two years earlier) for Democratic Reason: Politics, Collective Intelligence, and the Rule of the Many
  • 2015 - Nominated for the Brown Medal of Democracy (first round)
  • 2014-16 - ‘Enduring Questions’ competitive grant ($25,000) from the National Endowment for the Humanities for lecture course ‘How Do We Choose and Choose Well’
  • 2010 - Montreal Political Theory Manuscript Workshop Award for then book manuscript Democratic Reason: Politics, Collective Intelligence, and the Rule of the Many

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