Fostering a Democratic Culture: Lessons for the Eastern Neighbourhood
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Political culture is the values, beliefs, and emotions that members of a society express about the political regime and their role in it (Pickering, 2022, p. 5). Norms, values, attitudes and practices considered integral to a “culture of democracy”, according to the Council of Europe, include: a commitment to public deliberation, discussion, and the free expression of opinions; a commitment to electoral rules; the rule of law; and the protection of minority rights; peaceful conflict resolution. The consolidation of democracy involves not only institutional change, but also instilling a democratic culture in a society (Balčytienė, 2021). Research on democratic consolidation in various countries in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) finds that a key impediment to consolidation is the persistence of old, authoritarian political culture that undermines political and civic participation. This rapid review looks at aspects of democratic culture and potential ways to foster it, focusing on educational initiatives and opportunities for civic action — which comprise much of the literature on developing the values, attitudes and behaviours of democracy. Discussion on the strengthening of democratic institutions or assistance to electoral processes is outside the scope of the report.
CitationHaider, H. (2022). Fostering a democratic culture: Lessons for the Eastern Neighborhood. K4D Helpdesk Report 1195. Institute of Development Studies. DOI 10.19088/K4D.2022.131
Is part of seriesK4D Helpdesk Report;1195
Rights holder© Crown copyright 2022
SponsorForeign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO)
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