Juxtapositioning Populism and Professionalism

  • Andrew Lloyd Friedman University of Bristol


By denigrating expertise and challenging the value of evidence-based statements, advice and policies, populism challenges professions and professionalism. Arguably it is imperative for the professions to meet the challenge: but how? Here we provide an approach by juxtaposing populism and professionalism; two complex, ambiguous and contested phenomena with different and rarely connected literatures. Ontic and ontological definitions of each are compared and a method is developed for juxtaposing elements of their ontic definitions. Elements compared are: Manichean distinctions; disintermediation; morality v. ethics; emotionalism v. rationalism; and transparency. These are used to further understanding of both populism and professionalism and to provide insights into different ways the challenge of populism can be met: fighting it head on, adjusting to reduce the import of criticisms and perhaps controversially, adopting or at least adapting certain populist elements.


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How to Cite
Friedman, A. L. (2019). Juxtapositioning Populism and Professionalism. Professions and Professionalism, 9(2). https://doi.org/10.7577/pp.3201