Stein Ringen, a Norwegian political scientist, is emeritus professor at the University of Oxford. He started his academic career at the International Peace Research Institute in Oslo and was subsequently professor of welfare studies at the University of Stockholm. He has held visiting professorships and fellowships in Paris, Berlin, Prague, Brno, Barbados, Jerusalem, Sydney, Hong Kong, and at Harvard University. He has been assistant director general in the Norwegian Ministry of Justice, a consultant to the United Nations, and a news and feature reporter with the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation. His books include What Democracy Is For and Nation of Devils: Democracy and the Problem of Obedience.