Based on the findings of the three-year research project “What is democracy’s value?” led by our EDP network member Julia Leininger, the German Development Institute (DIE) in Bonn held a workshop from 7 to 8 December 2017 entitled “Whither the “End of the Liberal Order.” Do Societal Values Influence the Effectiveness of Democracy Support?”. During the two-day workshop participants discussed core values and effectiveness of international democracy support.
In addition to Julia, Tina Freyburg, also an EDP network member, is a cooperation partner in the project. At the moment they are working on a paper concerning the influence of international actors on whether and how attitudes change. Tina also presented results of the research at this workshop.
In the course of the three-year research project that created the foundation for this workshop, researchers analyzed how political attitudes are influenced by international democracy support, and how value orientations affect the effectiveness of democracy support. Accordingly, the workshop pursued two goals:
On the one hand, the team, consisting of Merran Hulse, Julia Leininger and Daniel Nowack, presented their research results, which indicate that social value orientations and political attitudes in fact have an influence on the effectiveness of inter- and transnational democracy promotion. In particular, this included cases of attempts to lift presidential term limits, as well as legislative reforms on gender equality and LGBTI persons.
On the other hand, democracy promoters from development and foreign policy discussed the implications of the project findings for the practice of promoting democracy.
The findings from the workshop and from the research project contributed to the generation of knowledge and policy formulation in a field that has been little studied so far.
More information on the publications within the research project can be found here (Leininger/Striebinger 2016: Kooperation mit religiösen Organisationen – aber wie?), here (Striebinger 2015: Vom Militärputsch zur Zivilregierung: angemessene Antworten internationaler Akteure) and here (Leininger 2013: Religiöse Akteure in Demokratisierungsprozessen: konstruktiv, destruktiv und obstruktiv).