Photo: Artur Kornakov via Unsplash.

Transatlantic Dialogue IV – The Struggle for Democracy in Asia: Regression, Resilience, Revival

The fourth session of our transatlantic dialogue series “Troubling Trends in Transformation” co-hosted with the Bertelsmann Foundation North America focused on the challenges for democracy in Asia. 

Asia is of crucial importance for the future of democracy and its global contestation with autocracy in the twenty-first century. Consolidated democracies are still the exception in Asia, and many aspiring democracies have suffered setbacks amid the ongoing global wave of democratic regression. However, the Asia-Pacific region is still much more democratic today than 30 years ago. The data and country reports of the Bertelsmann Transformation Index (BTI) even show that Asia also offers important insights into the factors and mechanisms that contained democratic decay. Our distinguished global panel discussed the drivers of democratic regression, sources of democratic resilience, and the governance challenges posed by Covid-19.


Aurel Croissant
Professor of Political Science, University of Heidelberg; BTI Asia Coordinator

Maiko Ichihara
Visiting Scholar, Stanford University; Associate Professor, Hitotsubashi University

Syaru Shirley Lin
Visiting Professor in World Politics, University of Virginia; Professor, Chinese University of Hong Kong

Anthony Silberfeld
Director Transatlantic Relations, Bertelsmann Foundation North America



About the dialogue series:

The dialogue series “Troubling Trends in Transformation”, co-hosted by the Bertelsmann Foundation North America (BFNA) and the Bertelsmann Stiftung, intends to dig deeper into the findings of a troubled decade, both regionally and thematically. In cooperation with like-minded institutions and well-connected think tanks around the world, we discuss the current and future challenges to political and economic transformation as well as governance perfomance. The results of the BTI serve to kick off a broader debate on how to strengthen democracy, market economy and good governance in a post-COVID world.

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