The world is in a third wave of autocratization. As we show in the Democracy Report 2021, the level of democracy enjoyed by the average global citizen in 2020 is down to levels last found before 1990 and the end of the Cold War. We also show that the share of the world population living in countries undergoing autocratization has increased from 6% to 34% in the last 10 years. Electoral autocracy is now the most common form of regime in the world, and the last country to degenerate into an electoral autocracy was India in 2020. The number of closed dictatorships is also increasing. Together these two types of autocracies are home to 68% of the world population, up from a mere 48% in 2010.
„Showing great personal courage and putting his life on the line, Alexei Navalny denounces the corruption of the elites as well as the arbitrary approach of courts and authorities. Refusing to be intimidated, he defends seriously threatened and restricted democratic values in his homeland – freedom of expression, protection of civil and human rights, acceptance of a political opposition and the rule of law. The award for Navalny, who remains imprisoned despite all the protests from Western politicians and governments, appeals for his release and the now banned network of his comrades-in-arms (the FBK Foundation), is also meant as a sign of support for the opposition and civil society in Russia.“
COVID-19 is both a blessing and a curse. During lockdown, the demand for quality journalism was huge. And, for months, we all did an extraordinary job – often from our kitchen tables or living room couches. However, as a result of the pandemic, the most important aspect of our work – namely, going out to meet people – became risky. This urgently needs to change once more.
Lorenz Hemicker, Political Editor, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung,and participant of this year’s M100 Sanssouci Colloquium.