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Stay up-to-date about the developments of direct democracy in the world.

French local elections in democratic limbo
While timely and necessary, the measures to halt the spread of COVID-19 have had an enormous impact not only on our daily lives, but also on our democracies. In this series, we try to asses how democratic practice has been affected and how we can make our future democracies more...
The 2019 Grand Débat National in France: A Participatory Experiment with Limited Legitimacy
Everyone remembers the Yellow Vests movement. Few remember the Grand Débat National. Yet, together they make up this singular political moment, between October 2018 and March 2019, France went through. If holding citizens’ consultations is by no means novel, what made the French...
Covid-19: Democracy International office closed
In accordance with federal and regional recommended measures to slow down the spread of the Covid-19 virus, the Democracy International office has currently adopted limited opening hours, with our team members working from home on most days. Please excuse any dificulties in...
Unlikely allies: how the ever-divided French Left and Right triggered a minority referendum to halt Macron’s privatization plans
In April last year, civil demands to stop the privatization of one of France’s public ‘’crown jewels’’, the Groupe ADP, ex-Aéroports de Paris were recognized in the political arena by a broad array of political parties. By triggering a minority referendum procedure, the called ‘...
Our European Public Sphere in Vienna
Behind citizen’s powerlessness: nostalgia, resentment and hope
With our eyes now turning towards Brussels and the upcoming launch of the Conference on the Future of Europe, attention and excitement are high. But so is the feeling of being powerless to influence EU politics among European citizens. From the perspective of EU democratic...
The new ECI is here - join us in Brussels
It’s 2020 – which means the European Citizens’ Initiative 2.0 is here! On January 1, the new rules of the tool went into effect, making the world’s only tool of transnational participatory democracy more user-friendly and effective. Two events dedicated to the ECI are kicking-...
The ruins of the Panguna mine (Photo courtesy of Madlemurs (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Inching towards Independence: a bumpy road ahead for Bougainville
In last November’s referendum, with a turnout of 87,4 per cent, a staggering 97,7 per cent of Bougainvillean voters opted for independence. The small island in the Pacific Sea is part of the state of Papua New Guinea (PNG), but already enjoys a special autonomous status. However...
Constitution building in Chile: a long way to go
Since October, Chile has seen tremendous social uprising across the country. What started as a protest about rising fares for the subway quickly grew into a broader protest about inequality and political exclusion. The situation even led into a 10-day long state of emergency,...
Passers-by vote on what "Change" means to them at the former Karstadt-building in Leipzig
30 years of Peaceful Revolution
30 years ago, citizen-led movements across Germany brought about a change that up until then had been considered unthinkable. Monday protests in Leipzig spilled over to the whole of East Germany and eventually brought about in the fall of the Berlin Wall and the reunification of...
World Citizens’ Initiative welcomed at Global Forum on Direct Democracy
This year, Democracy International, together with Democracy Without Borders and CIVICUS, started a campaign for a World Citizens' Initiative at the United Nations level under the name...


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