Athens Democracy Forum to Discuss Threats to Democracy

Among the central issues to be discussed are the threats posed to democracy by technological change and demagoguery, and how to combat them.

The fourth Athens Democracy Forum is to host leading personalities from the areas of politics, journalism, civil society and business this month for an in-depth discussion on the challenges of democracy.

Established by the New York Times, Kathimerini and the United Nations Democracy Fund, under the auspices of the City of Athens, the annual event addresses the hot-button issues being debated in today’s liberal societies.

From Nobel laureate Paul Krugman to the late UN secretary-general Kofi Annan, and from the former prime minister of Australia Kevin Rudd to whistleblower Edward Snowden, the Athens Democracy Forum debates these issues at the highest level.


This year’s theme is “Democracy in Danger: Solutions for a Changing World,” with the discussion focusing on the following questions: Are there flaws in the classic models of democracy? How are rapid technological advances changing the nature of politics? How can democracies preserve human rights amid pervasive populist backlashes? Do companies today have a greater responsibility to society? When is engagement good for business?

Among many other prominent figures on this year’s roster of speakers, these questions will be examined by: Argentinean Cabinet Chief Marcos Pena; 2015 Nobel Peace Prize winner Ouided Bouchamaoui; Council of Europe Secretary-General Thorbjorn Jagland; Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei and the author Yascha Mounk.

Events will take place in Athens from September 16-18 at Zappeion Hall, the Stoa of Attalos and the Acropolis Museum. Meanwhile, luxury resort Costa Navarino in Messinia will host a discussion on the role of books in democracy from September 14-16, where speakers will include renowned French writer Pascal Bruckner.

For the full schedule of the 4th ADF, click here.

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