Open Session on Democracy


Liberal democracies have long been on the rise. In the decades after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, there has been a sharp growth in the number of democratizing countries. In more and more countries, free elections were held, there was freedom of the press, freedom of association, and freedom of assembly. In more and more countries too, the exercise of state power became subject to law. However, with the backlash against democracies and the rise of right-wing populism, the quality and quantity of democracies and its institutions have been declining. This calls for new visions and futures of democracy.

The Institutions for Open Societies research network kicked off the year 2024 with an IOS Community Day and a Dies Natalis on the future of democracy. During these events, we have heard many views and (inter)disciplinary perspectives, as well as various problems and possible solutions.

To further stimulate the enthusiasm of these first meetings, Institutions for Open Societies is organising an Open Session on the (futures of) democracy on Tuesday 28 May. The intention of this meeting is to build on and deepen the previous and current discussions and to provide an open space to work towards shared initiatives and collaboration across different IOS platforms and beyond.

Do you feel commitment to the topic of democracy? Do you have ideas, concerns or initiatives for cooperation, dialogue, research, joint products or otherwise? Bring them forward on 28 May at the first IOS Open Session.

Interested in participating? Please register via the registration form.

For inspiration:

  • Watch the short theme video about democracy and read Mark Bovens' full speech on the unwritten rules of democracy, both part of the Dies Natalis.
Start date and time
End date and time
University Library, Drift 27, E0.21, Utrecht

Please register via this registration form.