Since its founding, NDI has been committed to the principles that allow people to live in free and open societies. With its sister organizations that are part of the National Endowment for Democracy, the Institute has operated in the belief that democracy is inseparable from human dignity and peace.
While democracy is a universal concept with varied manifestations, it is only in recent decades that its advantages over other forms of government have come to be accepted globally. Countries that are joining the community of democracies can count on natural allies and an active support structure because other nations are concerned and watching.
In recent years, a growing number of countries and intergovernmental organizations have established new democracy support initiatives. This support comes from many sources, is cost effective and has an impact. A 2006 study, which reviewed a decade of democracy and governance programs funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development, found that an investment of $1 million produced an increase in democracy that was 50 percent greater than the improvement in democracy that could be expected otherwise.
NDI is grateful to the National Endowment for Democracy, the U.S. Agency for International Development and the U.S. Department of State, as well as individuals, governments, foundations, multilateral institutions, trade union, corporations and organizations that support its work. The Institute also appreciates the contributions made to its programs by hundreds of volunteers from the United States and around the world whose willingness to share their knowledge and experiences enriches its programs and informs its partners worldwide.
Through the years, NDI has worked in 132 countries and territories. Today, supported by a staff representing 100 nationalities, it is part of a global network of intergovernmental and nongovernmental organizations and governments engaged in supporting democratization efforts.
The Institute is privileged to join with thousands of courageous democrats worldwide who are striving, often against tremendous odds, to build better lives for their fellow citizens, and to create a more peaceful and prosperous world.