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AIWS City at the Policy Dialog “Rethinking Democracy”

Club de Madrid’s members contributed to Remaking the World – Toward an Age of Global Enlightenment, making them distinguished leaders of Global Enlightenment Community in AIWS City.

We introduced some significant ideas of speakers at the Policy Dialog “Rethinking Democracy” organized by Club de Madrid in partnership with Boston Global Forum on October 27-29, 2021.

Regarding the continued support of international financial institutions towards increasingly autocratic states such as Nicaragua, Laura Chinchilla, Vice President of Club de Madrid and former President of Costa Rica stated: “International Financial Institutions must stop focusing only on the macro- economic and start looking at human rights”.

The former President of Costa Rica warned that international and regional organisations must act sooner when faced with a crisis of democracy. “If we operate under the logic that everything is fine, until everything is wrong, we end up with situations such as that of Nicaragua”, Chinchilla added.

Zsuzsanna Szelényi, Member of the Hungarian Parliament (2014-2018), explained the recent concerted effort by the Hungarian opposition to defeat Viktor Orban in the upcoming national election. Parties were able to come together and elect a single candidate by leveraging technology and digital activism. “Everything was online, as the public media was captured by the government. We now have the result, a candidate, who is a charismatic newcomer”, Szelényi said.

As a result of this experience, Szelényi concludes that “technology can deeply and strongly support democratic innovation”, but “it wouldn’t have worked without people first, coming out to the streets, and activists organising from behind”.