A group of politicians, civil society leaders and academics from the transatlantic community and emerging powers – including Argentina, Brazil, India, Indonesia, Mexico and South Africa – convened recently in Washington to discuss the potential for greater cooperation on democracy support.
The number of people living collectively in the democracies of Brazil, India and Indonesia is double the number living in the United States and European Union combined. However, even though many emerging powers have the most relevant democratic and economic development models, they are often not present in policy discussions on democracy support because they tend to be neither major donors nor recipients of development assistance. The roundtable was intended to examine opportunities for deepening partnerships between the transatlantic community and emerging democratic powers on democracy support.
The Washington roundtable, hosted by NDI, gave participants the opportunity to share perspectives and experiences on how emerging powers support democratic development beyond their borders. It also explored the challenges to greater engagement by emerging powers in democracy support and ways that the traditional donor community could better support these efforts. The discussion also explored mechanisms, including multilateral and nongovernmental channels, for deepening cooperation between the transatlantic community and emerging democratic powers on democracy support.
The roundtable, held Feb. 6 to 8, was made possible through the generous support of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, with additional support from the Mexican and Indonesian embassies. The discussions will inform a working paper that will provide recommendations to a transatlantic dialogue on democracy support. The two-year dialogue first met in Washington last June. The second conference will be held at the European Parliament in Brussels, March 13-15.
The dialogue is co-chaired by Madeleine K. Albright, former U.S. secretary of state; Jerzy Buzek, president of the European Parliament; Javier Solana, former EU high representative for the common foreign security policy; and former U.S. Representative Vin Weber. NDI is hosting the dialogue with support from the European Commission, the National Endowment for Democracy, the German Marshall Fund, the European Partnership for Democracy and the Office for the Promotion of Parliamentary Democracy of the European Parliament.
Pictured Above: NDI Chairman Madeleine K. Albright speaks at the opening of the roundtable.
Published February 28, 2011