Digital Democracy


Rapid technological developments witnessed over recent decades offer many opportunities, but also present us with new challenges – political, social, and sometimes private. Strategic questions regarding the political design of our digital future need to be considered at the international level in particular. This is because strict technological separation of a wide variety of state and non-state actors is now virtually impossible. Globalised goods, services, communications, and data streams are shaping the world.

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Content

Digital Democracy

  • Who Holds Sovereignty Over the Internet?

    Social Media and Democracy in Africa

    In Africa, the continent with the greatest democratic deficits, the internet, and above all social media, offers new opportunities for civic participation, transparency and public access to information. Yet the initial euphoria about the emancipatory potential of social media is increasingly being tempered by scepticism. It is hard to ignore the internet’s dark side, such as the spread of hate speech and fake news. Meanwhile, Africa’s autocratic regimes are becoming more adept at instrumentalising social media to serve their own ends.

    by Mathias Kamp

  • Digital Democracy in Action

    How Greece Wants to Catch Up with Europe

    The new government in Greece is not wasting time and has a clear plan to make up for the lost years of financial and economic turmoil. There is still a lot to do: in 2019, Greece ranked only 26th among the 28 EU member states on the European Commission Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI). Without digitalising, and slashing its bloated and overstaffed bureaucracy, the country will not achieve its aim of becoming an attractive destination for investment. The current efforts offer the chance to change the perception of Greece as the sick man of Europe.

    by Henri Bohnet, Martha Kontodaimon

  • Invented in China

    High Technology in the Service of Illiberalism

    30 years following the collapse of the Soviet Union, international politics is facing some fundamental questions once again. Whereas during the Cold War it was the socialist doctrine of the USSR, now it is China’s digitally empowered authoritarianism that poses a challenge to the West. In this conflict between two different systems, the focus is no longer solely on military capabilities, but also on key digital technologies and emerging industries. If the West is to prevail, it has to make an objective assessment of China’s capacity to innovate and find answers that take the factuality of globalisation in research, innovation and business into account.

    by Sebastian Weise

  • E-Currency

    Digital Money for the Digital State

    Facebook wants to enter the financial sector in 2020 with Libra, its cryptocurrency. With its two billion users worldwide, the social media company could become a serious actor overnight, developing clout that is comparable to that of traditional central banks. Several concerns have recently been expressed around the world, although even governments are developing e-currencies of their own.

    by Jason Chumtong

  • Democratising Deepfakes

    How Technological Development Can Influence Our Social Consensus

    The dissemination of fake news as a political instrument has long been an issue in contemporary political discourse. It is important to react to technological innovations that continue to expand the potential for disinformation campaigns, threatening our domestic security. Nauel Semaan talked to Dr. Hans-Jakob Schindler, Senior Director of the Counter Extremism Project, about the “new superweapon of fake news” – so-called deepfakes.

    by Nauel Semaan

Other Topics

  • Between Yurts and Skyscrapers

    Mongolia’s Youth are Grappling with a Corrupt Elite

    Young people in Mongolia are fighting for a say in politics. Internet activists are protesting against corruption in politics and business. In Ulaanbaatar, young women are fighting against sexual violence, and for more political participation. Meanwhile, traditional ways of life are in retreat. Are profound social changes, coupled with an ossified political elite, splitting Mongolian society?

    by Johann C. Fuhrmann

About this series

This periodical responds to questions concerning international issues, foreign policy and development cooperation. It is aimed at access of information about the international work for public and experts.

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The Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung publishes four issues of International Reports per year. Single issues: 10 €. Cheaper subscription rates. There is a special discount for students. For more information and orders, please contact:

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Editor

Dr. Gerhard Wahlers

ISBN

0177-7521

Benjamin Gaul

Benjamin Gaul

Head of International Reports and Communication

benjamin.gaul@kas.de +49 30 26996 3584

Samuel Krug

Samuel Krug 2020

Editor in chief International reports

samuel.krug@kas.de +49 30 26996 3818

Louisa Heuss

Louisa Heuss (2020)

Referentin Kommunikation und Vermarktung

louisa.heuss@kas.de +49 30 26996 3916 +49 30 26996 53916

Fabian Wagener

Fabian Wagener

Multimediareferent

fabian.wagener@kas.de +49 30-26996-3943