A Community of Democracies Network

08.08.2010

The European Institute for Democracy (EID) and Atlantic Council of the United States (ACUS) with support of National Endowment for Democracy (NED) organized a symposium in conjunction with the CoD, which convened young diplomats and youth activists to share "lessons learned," based on their experiences supporting the growth of democracy around the world.

The Community of Democracies, a global intergovernmental coalition of democratic countries, held a high-level meeting to mark its 10th anniversary on 2-4 July 2010 in Krakow, Poland.

An increasing number of governments, including those who are members of the Community of Democracies, recognize that supporting democracy around the world is in their national interest, and an important part of diplomatic practice. Diplomats play a key role, from observing developments affecting the growth of democracy to recommending policy options to support democratic trends. Activists advancing democratic practices in their home countries are often connected regionally and globally to other activists, and have significant experiences to bear on developing smart tactics to common challenges to democracy across countries.

By engaging the diplomatic community and civic leaders, YDD built on their collective knowledge to propose recommendations for how the diplomatic community can best support civil society and democratic trends around the world.

The "Young Diplomats for Democracy" (YDD) symposium had the following goals:

  • To create ties among a cadre of young diplomats and civic leaders, allowing them to share perspectives in promoting democracy through diplomacy and activism;
  • To engage YDD delegates with experts and top political leaders in a discussion about the importance of democracy and the steps the CoD might take in furtherance of that goal;
  • To explore the creation of an online community that could reinforce this network and provide a valuable resource center for discussing best practices.

The YDD delegates participated in a series of panels to address issues such as tactics for protecting human rights advocates, exploiting the power of technology and new media, and utilizing new voter education tools. YDD delegates focused on their past experiences and on developing future strategies that take this learning into account. Delegates also participated actively in the anniversary's High Level Democracy Meeting (HLDM). Afterwards, YDD will harness the connective potential of widely used technologies, including the ACUS and EID website and Facebook groups, to build this network as a powerful hub for learning in the service of democracy.

EID and ACUS are proven leaders in bringing together today's top policymakers and tomorrow's leaders for in-depth and open discussions. EID has proven experience for over a decade in the field of democracy promotion, working to expand civic engagement of women, youth organizations, independent journalists and other activists in Poland and abroad. Actively involved in work with political parties, Parliaments and local governments especially in Eurasia countries, EID is known as study trip, Seminars and Conference organizer providing platform for experience exchange and development of networks.

Among the Atlantic Council's flagship programs have been "Young Atlanticist" Summits at the Prague, Istanbul, and Bucharest NATO Summits.

At the pictures: YDD group with Secretary of State Hilary Clinton.

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At the pictures: YDD group with ex- President of Poland, Solidarity leader and Nobel Prize winner –Lech Walesa.

More about the event at : http://www.acus.org/event/young-diplomats-democracy-symposium

More pictures in photo gallery