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Direct Democracy in the Making in the Dolomites
The civic committee “Più Democrazia in Trentino” has achieved tangible results with their initiative to introduce more and better direct democracy in Trentino, an autonomous province in Northern Italy, renowned for the Dolomites that form part of the Alps. This month, the first...
Merkel on EU Convention during German primetime
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has fuelled the debate about an EU convention to elaborate a new treaty for the EU. In a TV interview broadcasted on Germany’s first channel on Sunday, 25 August 2012, Ms Merkel made clear that Europe must take steps towards more European...
ECI: Signature collection with Commission servers to solve problems
The European Commission has offered organisers of European citizens' initiatives (ECIs) to host their online collection systems of signatures on its own servers and to extend the one-year deadline for the collection of signatures. The move by the European Commission is an...
“30 million Moroccans love their King”
In the evening of Wednesday, 15 August 2012, I sit down with Sarra after a full day of discussions at the youth congress “Democracy in Motion” taking place in an old, remodeled farm in the countryside close to Hanover, Germany. Sarra is 21 years old and from Féz in Morocco. She...
Referendum on Nuclear Power in Bulgaria
Bulgaria is most likely to have a national referendum on its second nuclear power on the Danube early next year. The referendum will be held on “Belene” – a long pending project that had been discontinued earlier this year by a decision of the ruling party GERB. The Bulgarian...
German top court gives way to complaint on voting system
According to this morning’s judgment by Germany’s top constitutional lawyers, the German voting system infringes the German constitution (“Grundgesetz”). This verdict follows the constitutional complaint by our partner organization “Mehr Demokratie” and “” who had...
Big hopes and good news
“Burgas is the capital of direct democracy in Bulgaria!” – with these words our President Gerald Häfner concluded tonight’s welcoming speech of our summer academy to an audience of more than 50 people. Following today’s meeting of our pre-tour we have reason to base Gerald...
A community unites...
Today was the first day our summer academy 2012 in Burgas. And this day already held a very special highlight: As part of the pre-tour we learned how a small community holding tightly together can stop the business world, which had intended to build a massive oil pipeline...
Connecting facts and figures
Today, A. Solijonov from Stockholm-based Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance (IDEA) visited our office in Cologne to discuss ways of collaboration in our empirical research.
German citizens demand referendum on ESM and fiscal treaty
On Friday 29 June 2012, the German citizens’ alliance “Europa braucht mehr Demokratie” (Europe needs more democracy) and more than 12,000 citizens have lodged a complaint with Germany’s top Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe to hold a referendum on the European Stability...


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