In recent years, an array of challenges have threatened democracies. Resurgent authoritarianism, cultures of corruption, violent extremism, disinformation, rising inequality and more dominate the headlines. Scholars have warned of a global democratic recession. Translating democracy’s promise into a better life for all can be frustratingly slow and difficult, but we have found over the past 35 years that, whatever its shortfalls, democracy works. It is the only form of government that allows for peaceful self-correction. DemWorks, the podcast, will examine democracy’s challenges and opportunities with the help of NDI President Derek Mitchell and #DemocracyHeroes around the world who are working for democracy and making democracy work.

Find us on: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Google PlayRSS

How does humor help democracy?

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.

Read More…

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.

Read More…

Why is equality essential to a successful democracy?

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.

Read More…

How can democracies remain committed to their values amid rising authoritarianism?

In this DemWorks crossover episode, NDI President Derek Mitchell talks to Chris Walker and Shanthi Kalathil from the National Endowment for Democracy (the NED) about the rise of authoritarian influence around the world. With a focus on China, they discuss how China’s Communist Party has survived since Tiananmen Square, the One Belt, One Road initiative, and the hard questions China’s rise poses to open societies’ most fundamental principles.

Read More…

How is Ukraine strengthening its democracy in the face of foreign aggression?

In this second episode of the DemWorks podcast, Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze, the deputy prime minister for European and Euro-Atlantic integration in Ukraine, talks to NDI President Derek Mitchell about her decision to run for parliament in the wake of the Ukrainian revolution, confrontations with misogyny early in her career, and her fight to open up the Ukrainian military to female service members.

Read More…