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World Forum for Democracy

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The World Forum for Democracy is an annual gathering of leaders, opinion-makers, civil society activists, representatives of business, social innovators, academia, and media to debate key challenges for democracies worldwide and encourage democratic innovation. The 2022 edition, taking place in Strasbourg (France) from 7 to 9 November 2022, will focus on the topic of « Democracy: A New Hope? ».

The labs are the heart of the World Forum for Democracy. Their idea is to address specific issues through the critical analysis of tested initiatives.
The labs will allow participants to learn about ground-breaking initiatives that offer responses to the key questions above based on an analysis of their real impact and replicability.
The initiatives should help understand how democracy and democratic institutions and practices can help accelerate the fight against democratic backsliding.

The initiatives should be presented in short speeches of ten minutes and critically assessed by multidisciplinary panels and participants in the labs.

How to apply
Interested public or private organisations worldwide are invited to express their interest in presenting an initiative aimed at enhancing democracy and reversing democratic decline from all over the world.

Examples of possible initiatives and their challenges (non-exhaustive):

  • Deliberative democracy and public policy
  • Building resilient, participatory and connected communities through new forms of civic engagement and public-private partnerships
  • Activism targeting the issues of underrepresented groups, minorities, indigenous communities, immigrants, refugees
  • Showcasing non-traditional democratic models improving citizens’ participation
  • Civic education, new platforms for developing informed, engaged democracy
  • Addressing the wealth gap, new or more effective ways of lifting people out of poverty, crowdfunding activism
  • Promoting accountability of elected officials and their communication with citizens, targeting corruption, improving integrity of public life
  • Reconciliation processes, truth-telling, restorative justice
  • Advocacy, protection, support or aid for activists promoting democratic values
  • Promoting intercultural dialogue, cultural diversity, and artistic expression as a method of citizens’ engagement with democracy
  • Incentives for ethical governance, democratic participation or disincentives for polarizing, intolerant social behaviours and political extremism
  • Preventing subversion of democratic processes, supporting fact-checking and countering biases
  • Inclusion of non-citizens, children or other excluded groups into the democratic process
  • Monitoring, tracking hate crimes, extremism, inequalities, polarisation or other negative social/political trends

Submissions should be made by answering the questionnaire and sending it to forum_democracy@coe.int by 15 June 2022.
One presenter for the selected initiatives will be invited to Strasbourg to take part in the World Forum.
Travel and accommodation expenses may be covered by the Council of Europe if required.

Find out more here.

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