30 years since the Berlin Wall fell, progress for democracy continues

Madeleine K. Albright visits the crumbled remains of the Berlin Wall to mark the 30th anniversary of its fall.

Last week marked the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Amid the remembrances, debates over "what went wrong" and doubt about democracy's promise in some quarters almost seemed to overshadow the celebrations.

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Why are young voices and young leadership critical to democracy?

NDI Chairman Madeleine Albright met with members of EDYN in Berlin to discuss youth leadership and the future of democracy in Europe on the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.

DemWorks is coming to you from the heart of Berlin on the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Thirty years ago, a wave of revolutions swept across Europe - revolutions that were driven by young people who demanded democracy. Decades later, democracy faces new challenges in Europe, and a new generation is driving a new wave of change.

NDI’s Nadia Mouzykina and IRI’s Sam Johannes are joined by three inspiring members of the European Democracy Youth Network to discuss why young voices and young leaders are critical to democracy.

EDYN is supported by the National Democratic Institute, International Republican Institute, and USAID.

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Citizen Election Monitors Played A Key Role in Tunisia’s Presidential Elections

Representatives of six Tunisian election observation groups held a joint press conference on October 17 to deliver their assessments of the 2019 elections. From the start of voter registration in April to the conclusion of electoral appeals in November, the groups organized a coordinated effort of each phase of the electoral process.

As Tunisian citizens went to the polls to elect a new president last month, citizen observers were present in large numbers, including non-partisan observers, pollwatchers representing candidates, and international monitors like the delegation led by NDI and International Republican Institute. Since only two candidates were competing in the presidential run-off election, the total number of candidate agents declined significantly compared to the prior elections simply because there were fewer candidates contesting for positions. Misinformation began to spread that the elections were going unwatched, but non-partisan observers were out in numbers equivalent to the September 15 first-round presidential and October 6 legislative elections.

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Demworks Live! Why is political polarization happening now?

Left to right: Sef Ashiagdor of NDI, Tom Carothers of Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and NDI President Derek Mitchell.

DemWorks celebrates its 10th episode with a special live installment, discussing the rising threat of political polarization. NDI President Derek Mitchell sits down with renowned global expert on democratization, Tom Carothers of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and NDI’s Senior Advisor for political parties, Sef Ashiagdor.

They discuss the points of resilience against severe polarization that exist and the role that political parties play in democracies. Additionally, NDI’s Washington, D.C. staff had the opportunity to ask the panel their own questions on why political polarization is a growing trend for democracies around the world.

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Is Democracy in Europe Delivering?

Anne Applebaum joins us for the Demworks podcast, "Is Democracy in Europe Delivering?"

Next month marks the 30th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Democracy looked much different in 1989 than it does today. How has democracy changed in Eastern Europe since the bold steps it took in the region three decades ago?

In this Demworks podcast, NDI President Derek Mitchell sits down with Pulitzer-prize winning journalist, analyst, professor, and historian, Anne Applebaum to discuss the current state of democracy in Eastern Europe, and what its future looks like. #Listen to this engaging #podcast as they discuss the importance of citizen participation and political awareness in democracies today.

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How does humor help democracy?

Matt Wuerker (left), Derek Mitchell (right)

In this DemWorks podcast we explore humor, arguably the most democratic form of speech. We talk to Matt Wuerker, the Pulitzer Prize winning editorial cartoonist for Politico, one of the leading news organizations in the United States dedicated to American politics.
Matt’s cartoons pull no punches, skewering Democrats, Republicans and all types of political absurdity. Matt also serves on the board of Cartoonists Rights Network International, an organization that has worked to defend the rights and security of political cartoonists worldwide.

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The good news about Ukraine – and why it deserves our support.

An NDI staff member votes in the March 31, 2019, presidential election, while accompanying international election observers as they observed opening, voting, counting, and tabulation processes in Kyiv and 13 other regions across the country.

Ukraine is all over the news these days, albeit not in a good way. That is unfortunate. The country deserves much more – and favorable – support for its democratic progress and remarkable resilience in the face of economic hardship and unrelenting Russian aggression. Five years after the Revolution of Dignity ushered in a new democratic moment in 2014, Ukraine’s people in fact are as unified as ever in their aspirations for a more democratic, peaceful and corruption-free society.

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Celebrate the promise and resilience of democracy!

Parliamentary fellows in Albania share tips on identifying credible sources of information at a workshop at NDI’s country office.

Today marks International Democracy Day 2019.

From the world’s oldest to youngest democracies, this is a day to celebrate the promise and resilience of democracy around the world. Despite real headwinds that have dominated the headlines, political participation in fact is up, reflecting the continued potency of the democratic idea. From Managua to Moscow, Algiers to Istanbul, and Khartoum to Hong Kong, people of all races, religions, cultures, and backgrounds are demanding their voices be heard, their rights and dignity be protected, and that justice prevail.

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How will 2019 fit into the story of Tunisia's democratic development?

Tunisians go to the polls on Sunday for the second democratic presidential election in the country’s modern history. What will they be thinking about as they cast their ballots? Jobs? Human rights? Pollution? How will these and other priorities reshape the political landscape in the months and years to come, as the country navigates the choppy waters of economic stagnation and more stringent popular demands for elected leaders to deliver? And how do those leaders—from the president all the way down—actually realize the promises they make during election season?

The answers to these questions are relevant not just to the people of Tunisia—the birthplace of the Arab Spring—but for small-‘d’ democrats across the region who look to the country for hope and guidance. In the newest episode of the DemWorks podcast, Leo Spaans, our country director in Tunisia, and Les Campbell, NDI regional director for the Middle East and North Africa, try to provide some answers.

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