Our Members at YSPS Participate in World Forum of Democracy at the Council of Europe
In November 2013 members of NGO “European Integration” Christine Hovsepyan and Gayane Sargsyan participated in the final session of Yerevan School of Political Studies in Strasbourg, France.
The completion of the studies took place during the World Forum for Democracy at the Council of Europe. The certificates of completion of studies were handed to the Yerevan School of Political Studies.
Many issues of importance were discussed and raised by the 1000 participants from more than 100 countries who gathered in Strasbourg, France, on 27-29 November at the World Forum for Democracy “Rewiring democracy – connecting citizens and institutions in the digital age”, organised jointly by the Council of Europe, the French government, the Alsace Region and the city of Strasbourg. The twenty-one Forum Labs analysed thirty three digital participation platforms and initiatives, assessing their impact and the potential risks they carry for human rights and the integrity of democracy. Many of them reinforce the legitimacy, transparency and responsiveness of the governing institutions and help re-build a relationship of trust between citizens and their representatives. Others bring direct democracy elements into the representative system and create tension which may in turn reshape the institutional architecture of democracy.
In order to do so, the Forum pointed to some crucial tasks:
- Encourage/promote change in political parties to enable greater openness, transparency, accountability and responsiveness to grassroots input, including by exploiting e-initiatives
- ensure that e-participation schemes are transparent, auditable, and accountable to participants and the wider community and in conformity with the highest standards on protection of privacy
- step up media literacy to enable citizens to make full use of the opportunities of digital technology for self-empowerment and participation in political processes.
These tasks require strong partnerships between international and national actors, the CoE is ready to play its part and welcomes other partners in joining efforts to address these challenges.