The Reshaping European Democracy initiative aims to analyze, debate, and help improve the state of European democracy. It takes a composite look at innovations and trends across Europe’s civil society, citizen participation, digital technology, political parties, and institutional reforms, and assesses how they are shaping the future of democracy in Europe.

  • Commentary

    Why Populism Can Survive the Pandemic

    Countries with populist governments have been especially badly hit by the coronavirus pandemic. But beware: the virus is unlikely to kill off populism. To rid the world of populism, its root causes must be addressed.

  • How the Coronavirus Tests European Democracy

    The coronavirus pandemic is prompting contrasting trends in European democracy. While the crisis is aggravating many stresses that afflict democracy in Europe, it is also propelling democratic efforts in a number of areas.

  • Article

    Coronavirus and Europe’s New Political Fissures

    While the principal concern about democracy during the coronavirus pandemic has been that European governments will be tempted to hold on to their new executive powers, pressure to restore democracy may now be propelling a predatory and polarized politics.

  • Op-Ed

    Democracy Is the Missing Link in EU Coronavirus Recovery Plans

    By trying to manage the financial fallout of the coronavirus without also providing democratic reform, the EU will unleash another cycle of the legitimacy problems it has suffered since the eurozone crisis.

  • Article

    How European Civil Society Is Pushing Back Against Democratic Erosion

    • Giada Negri
    • March 12, 2020

    Civil society organizations throughout Europe are not taking authoritarian encroachment sitting down. Instead, they are finding creative ways to fight back.

  • Patterns and Particularities in European Democracy

    A striking feature of democracy in the European Union is the sheer variation in political trends. To rebuild democratic citizenship, the EU must address three common, broad concerns across Europe.

  • Commentary

    Can Europe Be a Catalyst for Democratic Innovation?

    • Stephen Boucher
    • January 17, 2020

    The EU could benefit from tapping into the smart ideas behind its many successful local projects, and then adapting them to benefit other member states.

  • Article

    A New Wave of Deliberative Democracy

    • Claudia Chwalisz
    • November 26, 2019

    Countries worldwide are experimenting with permanent citizen engagement in public decisionmaking. Could "ordinary citizens" become a new cornerstone of democracy?

  • Paper

    Six Ideas for Rejuvenating European Democracy

    • Richard Youngs, Stephen Boucher, Israel Butler, Maarten de Groot, Elisa Lironi, Sophia Russack, Corina Stratulat, Anthony Zacharzewski
    • November 06, 2019

    The European Commission’s new president should act decisively to make deliberations in Brussels more accountable to voters and national parliaments.

Ideas and analysis are valuable, but Carnegie’s business is improving policies, decisionmaking, and real-world outcomes. Excellence in scholarship and responsiveness to changing global circumstances define our work, and we are committed to making a concrete difference in the world.

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