How can freedom and democracy survive in a world of powerful digital technologies? Not long ago, the tech industry was widely admired, and the internet was regarded as a tonic for freedom and democracy. Not any longer. Every day, the headlines blaze with reports of racist algorithms, data leaks and social media platforms festering with falsehood and hate.

In his latest book, The Digital Republic: On Freedom and Democracy in the 21st Century, acclaimed author Jamie Susskind argues that these problems are not the fault of a few bad apples at the top of the industry. They are the result of our failure to govern technology properly, a failure derived from decades of muddled ideas and wishful thinking.

One national reviewer said of The Digital Republic, ‘The power of tech corporations is a threat to democracy, yet governments are reluctant to take action. This refreshing book picks apart the ideology that holds them back.’

Jamie Susskind will address this fascinating and difficult subject as guest speaker at the Guernsey Literary Festival’s Business Breakfast on Friday 12 May at the OGH Hotel. The event, which is sponsored by Butterfield, is from 8-9.30 am and tickets include continental breakfast and a copy of The Digital Republic. Jamie’s talk will start at 8.30 and will be chaired by Rob Shepherd, chairman of the Guernsey Literary Festival.

Alan Bain, Managing Director of sponsors Butterfield Bank in Guernsey, says, ‘This is a subject of tremendous importance to all of us, and his book poses many great political questions about the challenges of the digital age. We are delighted to continue our support for the Festival, especially as we celebrate our 50th year in the Channel Islands.’
The work of author and barrister Jamie, who has held fellowships at Cambridge and Harvard Universities, is often at the crossroads of technology, politics, and law. He’s described by Tony Blair as “One of the foremost thinkers on the transformative impact of the technology revolution”. The Digital Republic was a Financial Times book to read in 2022.

He is also the author of the award-winning Future Politics: Living Together in a World Transformed by Tech (Oxford, 2018), an Evening Standard and Prospect Book of the Year. Future Politics was awarded the 2019 Estoril Global Issues Distinguished Book Prize.

Jamie Susskind speaks around the world about digital technology and its impact on politics, economics, and morality. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, the Financial Times, The Times, The Guardian, Wired, the Daily Telegraph, Fast Company, the New Statesman, and elsewhere.

Tickets for Jamie’s talk, together with details of all the other Guernsey Literary Festival events are available on the Festival website The Festival, which runs from 2-14 May this year, has 65 events organised, covering a wide range of issues and literature.