Strengthening democracy for a more effective multilateralism

The war in Ukraine has global implications, including for the future of multilateralism. It is bringing into focus some of the longer-term trends around a renewed wave of authoritarianism and populism in national politics. These trends in turn undermine the multilateral system, which was designed and established following World War II with the core objective of maintaining peace and promoting prosperity. Faced with the evidence of devastating conflicts in Syria, Yemen, Ethiopia and now Ukraine, we need to understand where the multilateral system is failing, and how we can address these challenges.

An element of the solution may lie in a renewed focus on the principles and the practice of democracy, at both the national and the international level.

What changes to the multilateral system do we need, in order to increase the likelihood that political problems can be resolved through dialogue and compromise rather than violence and brute force?

How can we make sure that democracy support and security-focused policies become complementary and mutually reinforcing?

All these issues were discussed at the roundtable ‘Strengthening democracy for more effective multilateralism’:

  • Danilo Türk – President of Club de Madrid and President of Slovenia (2007-2012)
  • Anda Filip – Director for Member Parliaments and External Relations, Inter-Parliamentary Union
  • Corinne Momal-Vanian – Executive Director, Kofi Annan Foundation
  • Thomas Guerber – Director, Geneva Centre for Security Sector Governance (DCAF)

Moderator: Alexander Likhotal – Club de Madrid Advisor and Professor at the Geneva School of Diplomacy and International Relations