The Centre for Democracy Studies (ZDA)
We are an academic research centre at the University of Zurich dealing on an interdisciplinary level with basic research and current scientific issues relating to democracy – here, there and everywhere.
The Centre for Democracy Studies (ZDA) was established in March 2009 in Aarau to practice and promote top level scientific research and teaching on democracy in political science, law and political education. The national research programme “Challenges to Democracy in the 21st Century” (Website NCCR Democracy) provided an important impulse for the establishment of the ZDA.
The ZDA is a meeting point for qualified researchers, interested bodies and curious citizens from around the world who care for democracy and its development.
Centre for the Study of Democracy
The Centre for the Study of Democracy undertakes research, teaching and knowledge exchange in democratic theory and practice. Established in 1989, it is now a major international centre for intellectual reflection and engagement on issues relating to democracy, civil society and processes of democratisation. Chantal Mouffe, John Keane and Bhikhu Parekh have been leading contributors, and the Centre’s staff and students are currently engaged in a diverse range of research projects. CSD is an open, pluralistic and inter-disciplinary community, dedicated to bringing theory, practice and people together to deepen democracy.
CSD holds regular seminars, workshops and conferences. It also collaborates with other institutions in the organisation of international events. Recently, this has included ‘The Future of Europe,’ (with Birkbeck College, School of Law) and’A Multipolar World Orde,’ (with the Open University and Newcastle University).
The Centre is a founding member of the Space of Democracy/Democracy of Space Network. It publishes The Bulletin and hosts the annual CSD Encounter. This has included speakers such as Charles Taylor, Stuart Hall, Julia Kristeva, Bruno Latour, Quentin Skinner, Richard Rorty, Michael Walzer and Judith Butler.
Democracy: Structures, Performance, Challenges (Research Unit)
The department investigates how institutions and political actors interact in a democracy – and how efficiently established and young democracies are when it comes to solving economic and social problems. The theoretical framework is embedded democracy – a concept in which democracies are kept intact by systems of government with interlocking partial regimes: an electoral regime, political liberties, civil rights, horizontal accountability and an effective power to govern. This approach provides a comprehensive analysis of these partial regimes, in relation both to each other and to external challenges to democracy. Researchers focus on the diagnosis of the challenges to democracy, the comparative analysis of institutional systems, such as government or electoral systems, and the comparative study of important political actors such as parliament, administration or jurisdiction.
The European Master’s Programme in Human Rights and Democratisation (E.MA)
The European Master’s Programme in Human Rights and Democratisation (E.MA) is a one-year advanced master’s course aimed at preparing professionals to respond to the operational requirements of daily work in international organisations, field operations, governmental and non-governmental bodies, and academia.
E.MA offers an action- and policy-oriented approach to learning that combines interdisciplinary perspectives with skills building activities. While studying in a multicultural environment, students have the opportunity to meet and be taught by leading academics representing the 41 E.MA participating universities, officials of international organisations (including the European Union, the United Nations and the Council of Europe) and experts and practitioners of national and international NGOs.
E.MA is both a residential and an exchange programme: during the first semester students stay in Venice (Italy), while for the second semester they move to one of the E.MA participating universities located throughout Europe. The course also includes a week-long field trip to a post-conflict country.
E.MA is the main teaching programme of the European Inter-University Centre for Human Rights and Democratisation (EIUC).
Media and Democracy in Central and Eastern Europe (MDCEE)
The project looks at the often troublesome and poorly understood relationship between democracy and the media in Central and Eastern Europe.
Existing studies tend to focus on whether media are good or bad for democracy. Western media models assume that democratic institutions pre-date the rise of media, and that core qualities of democratic governance exist (including the rule of law, political pluralism, freedom of speech and information). But such assumptions do not necessarily apply in Central and Eastern Europe, where democratic institutions and media institutions emerged simultaneously and interdependently in a period of rapid and often chaotic reform.
Our project intends to take a novel and interdisciplinary approach to the question.
We aim to reverse the common framing of the media-democracy relationship. Instead of asking how media performance of certain normative functions (such as information provision and holding power elites to account) influences democracy, we ask:
What kind of democracy is needed for media to perform its agreed-upon normative functions?
In other words, we are interested in the quality of the media as a function of the quality of democracy.
The Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD)
The Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) at Leuphana University Lüneburg conducts research on democratic structures and procedures in politics and society, economics and the environment. The central focus of research is on questions of legitimacy and performance of democracy in the 21st century.
The Center’s research activities focus on three main areas: Value Change and Human Empowerment, Party Government and Institutional Change and Participation and Public Policy. In addition, the CSD engages in active promotion of younger researchers as well as in international and regional networking of democracy research institutions.
The European Inter–University Centre for Human Rights and Democratisation (EIUC)
EIUC is an interdisciplinary centre formed by 41 universities from all European Union Member States. It is founded on a commitment to the realisation of the values enshrined in the European Union Charter of Fundamental Rights, the promotion of high-level inter-disciplinary human rights education, research, training and culture, and a shared global understanding of human rights and democracy. EIUC is located in Venice, Italy.
The Oxford Centre for the Study of Inequality and Democracy (OCSID
The Oxford Centre for the Study of Inequality and Democracy(OCSID) – is a new organization aiming to promote both independent and collaborative research among the diverse community of comparative politics specialists at Oxford.
The Centre will foster the analysis of a broad range of issues and institutions in established and new democracies as well as the analysis of economic, social and political inequalities in regimes of any type.