CHAPTER 9

Structure: Repairing Failing Institutions

Cementing the Foundations

The term institution covers a lot of territory. Political, health, legal, and financial systems are institutions. So are tax codes and the media. Of course, schools, the police, charities, and religions are as well. A diverse group, to be sure. But one thing institutions all have in common is that they play a decisive role in the smooth running of our societies—local and global. When our institutions are working right, they provide stability.1 We expect certain things from them—a fair trial, the same university degree requirements for all of us, and balanced news reporting, for example. And unless they are corrupted, they generally live up to our expectations. By default, ...

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