January 18, 2018
Ravi Roy
Distinguished Faculty Scholar
The Great Hall

Reflection | Video | Podcast | Photos

This season's distinguished lecturer is SUU's assistant professor of political science, Ravi Roy. He serves as the W. Edwards Deming fellow in public affairs. He received his Ph.D. in political science and public policy from Claremont Graduate University in California. He previously studied at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia and the University of California, Santa Barbara. In 2017 he celebrated his fifth anniversary working at SUU. Among other honors, he was awarded a certificate of recognition presented by his Excellency Suslio Bambang Yudhoyono, President of Indonesia (2004-2014), for participating in Indonesia Toward 2025. He has participated in and organized many roundtables, panels and workshops involving global studies and political science. He loves to inspire and support students to reach their full potential. The most rewarding part of his job is seeing what those students can do to change their own and other’s lives.

Ravi Roy on the SUU blog

Event Reflection

Dr. Ravi Roy kicked off the spring A.P.E.X. season with the 2018 Distinguished Faculty Scholar Lecture. During his hour-long talk, he discussed the importance of, and ways to, rebuild public trust.

Roy's speech was intriguing because unlike a typical conversation on politics, it didn't devolve into name-calling and petty arguments. Instead, he set his ideology aside and provided objective insight into the problems.

Early in the talk, he pointed to the correlations between growing government size and the public's disapproval of their work. At the same time, as the country becomes less civically-engaged, we dislike our public servants more.

Rebuilding public trust is necessary because our government is based on the consent of the governed, but it is no easy task, partially because defining "public trust" is difficult. In preparation for his talk, Roy said he couldn't come up with a concrete definition.

Even if a clear definition is found, Roy pointed out that the solution will take a long time, because "our schizophrenic perceptions of government are part of the problem." Most people don't expect government to do well, and when they don't, the same people get upset.

Although the talk was heavy at times, Roy lightened the mood near the end when he discussed ways that SUU students can influence the political sphere.

  1. Listen during conversations. Roy pointed out that most people share the same concerns, but we tend to focus on the conclusions instead. Although we may not agree with someone on how to solve a particular problem, listening to where they come from can keep us from stereotyping and dehumanizing them.
  2. Visit the Leavitt Center. From internships to voter registration drives, the Michael O. Leavitt Center for Politics and Public Service can provide students with information and opportunities on ways they can get involved. At the very least, you can join political conversations every Wednesday at noon in the Center (and enjoy a free slice of pizza)!
  3. Don't wait to change the world. College is often the last time in our lives where we have the opportunity to dedicate years to learning, and with that comes fresh perspectives. Proposing bold ideas may be intimidating right after graduating college, but innovation doesn't come from continuing the status quo.

The next A.P.E.X. Event will take place on Thursday, January 25, in the Whiting Room of the Hunter Conference Center at 11:30 a.m. Members of SUUSA will discuss the "State of the Union."


A.P.E.X. Hour Podcast

Audio Transcript