Reflecting on the fall of the Berlin Wall, 30 years on (w/ Brian Atwood & Ken Wollack)

Left to right: Brian Atwood, Derek Mitchell, and Ken Wollack.

In this special episode of Demworks, NDI President Derek Mitchell is joined by his predecessors at NDI, Brian Atwood and Ken Wollack. The three discuss the years before and after November 9, 1989, the day the Berlin Wall fell. Together on this anniversary, they take stock, talking about the evolution of NDI’s work around this period, discussing the specific cases that helped shape the Institute, and reflecting on lessons learned given the state of democracy today.

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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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How does increased youth participation in politics improve a society?

In Jordan, NDI is using an innovative program to help young people use democratic methods and community action to become invested in their nation’s future. Through “Ana Usharek” (“I Participate”), university students throughout the country are learning about democratic values and political systems, human rights, non-violent dispute resolution, and civic responsibility.

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Why is equality essential to a successful democracy?

Olena Yena reflects upon Ukraine’s remarkable transformation in the realm of women's empowerment. 

 

DemWorks continues to celebrate International Youth Day by exploring the importance of gender equality in democracy. In episode 6, Laura Jewett, NDI’s regional director for Eurasia speaks with Olena Yena, who directs the Women Lead program in NDI’s Ukraine office. Olena spearheads NDI initiatives aimed at promoting gender equality, enhancing women's political participation, and combating gender stereotypes and discrimination.

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Young Women. Fresh Voices. The Future of Democracy.

Tarina Ahuja is a high school senior, a political activist and co-founder of the nonprofit Young Khalsa Girls.

The DemWorks Podcast and Video series will extend International Youth Day (August 12) to celebrate and amplify the political engagement of young women and young men throughout the month of August. In this episode, Molly Middlehurst, Senior Program Officer on the Gender, Women and Democracy team at NDI, speaks to the inspirational Tarina Ahuja.

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