The 2017 World Forum for Democracy will focus on the role of political parties and media in the context of rising populism. A growing disconnect between citizens and political elites and dramatic changes in the media ecosystem are a challenge for democracy. New political and media actors and practices are emerging, offering opportunities for direct, unmediated engagement of the public, unbound by ethical or institutional safeguards. How can pluralism, freedom of expression, and fair and evidence-based public debate be safeguarded in these new conditions? How to nourish political culture which embraces a long-term perspective and resists the excesses of populism?
This year, interested organisations/institutions (and in particular media outlets and political parties) worldwide are invited to express their interest in presenting an initiative aimed at re-building trust in media and in political parties. The Forum is looking for initiatives that will be presented in short speeches of ten minutes and critically assessed by multidisciplinary panels and participants in the labs. The key conclusions and lessons learnt from the labs will be discussed in a summing up session in order to prepare the overall conclusions for the Forum. The participants will vote to choose the winner of the Democracy Innovation award among the presented initiatives.
The World Forum for Democracy is a platform for dialogue and innovation dedicated to democracy which promotes the Council of Europe principles across the world. The Forum highlights and encourages democratic innovation to strengthen the foundations of democratic societies. A democratic exercise in itself, the Forum aims at giving the people – demos – their rightful place in political decision-making.