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Democracy & Social Policy – All contributions

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Democracy is not an automatic success - it must be fought for, revitalized, and renewed. Learn more about what the Heinrich Böll Foundation and our partners are doing to support democratic engagement worldwide.


Scenes of migrants stranded at the southern borders of the European Union and the United States have become increasingly regular news items, causing debates on immigration policies to intensify. Meanwhile, child migrants face dangerous conditions, detention, and deportation. How are these policies enacted in the EU and US and in comparison to the standards set by international law? By Nicole Johnson, intern at the HBS North America Office. 

Thirty Years of Bundestag Presence

In the run-up to the 2013 German federal elections, this publication considers three decades of a changing political landscape with the emergence of the Green Party. The authors discuss how the Green Party built its “brand” and, in so doing, ushered in a fundamental change in German politics and society.

Relationships between democracy and more particularly democratization on the one side and climate change and responses to that on the other are underexplored in the two literatures on democratization and climate change. A special issue of the journal DEMOCRATIZATION, with contributions by several Heinrich Böll Foundation authors, explores a variety of facets of this complex and interdependent relationship.

The Heinrich Böll Foundation will close its office in Ethiopia at the end of 2012. The current political and legal situation in the country is such that the Foundation is unable to carry out its work in a politically sustainable and practicable manner. We can no longer fulfil our mission of working with local partners to support democracy, gender justice and sustainable development.

The presidential election this year in the United States, like in many years before, is going to hinge on the outcome in just a couple of "swing states." Why is it that just a few jurisdictions in the country hold the keys to the White House, while other whole regions are largely irrelevant to presidential campaigns? What is the Electoral College and where did it come from? How could a modern democracy still maintain a system that is clearly anti-democratic? Is there any real possibility of reform?

Having fulfilled their historic mission to build the welfare state, social democrats struggle to articulate a vision beyond the status quo. Where should they turn after the third way?

Looking at the upcoming parliamentary election in Iran, Dr. Hosein Ghazian analyses the challenges of this election in the light of recent political developments in Ira.

Representatives of the Afghan civil society call for further cooperation and the creation of a unified vision shared by the Government of Afghanistan, the international community, and Afghan civil society institutions in order to bring peace and a prosperous future to the country and the Afghan people
Ten years after the adoption of UN resolution 1325 "Women, Peace and Security", the Gunda Werner Institute (GWI) of the Heinrich Boell Foundation in cooperation with the German Women's Security Council and Peace Women Across the Globe hosted an international conference.

One of the most important focal points of overlapping and competing interests of both established and emerging powers is the Middle East. This publication attempts to look at the effects of the global shift of power on the Middle East to explore the prospects of the region to become a partner in an emerging multi-polar system, rather than a stomping ground or even a battlefield for the interest and the prestige of others.

For more than three decades, transnational corporations have been busy buying up what used to be known as the commons -- everything from our forests and our oceans to our broadcast airwaves and our most important intellectual and cultural works.

This edition of the Heinrich Boell Foundation’s series on Democracy analyzes the historical and current developments of gender relationships, and the role of women in the politics of Egypt, Morocco, the United Arab Emirates, and Kuwait.

The journey from Sarajevo to Budapest was longer than intended after the October 3rd general elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH). The mood of the BiH passengers reflected more or less the mood of the country – is BiH going to make political progress?

An important addition to the growing international dialogue about the commons can be found in the new anthology, Genes, Bytes and Emissions: To Whom Does the World Belong? The essays in this book are now available online in English.

The paper examines whether democracy at the country level and global climate change matter for another. It raises the question of how to support democracy’s advance in the face of multiple challenges that include the adverse effects of global warming and extreme weather events merits much more attention than it has received so far.

How can the current legislative back lock be overcome? This policy paper discusses Filibuster Reform, Cloture and Reconciliation as means to improve legislative outcome in the American Senate.

January, 2010Information Sharing and Data Protection in an Age of Terrorism: Report Highlights Challenges and Proposes Way Forward for United States and Europe

Religion, Politics and Gender Equality

The United States has been dominated by a political coalition in which conservative evangelical Protestants have played a major role leading to a vociferous conservativism in U.S. policy on issues of both gender and sexuality. Although the elections in 2008 ushered in a new alliance toward more progressivism, the result on questions of gender and sexuality is by no means obvious.

As the interim period of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) draws to a close during 2010–11, Sudan faces two critical tests of its nationhood: the general elections and the referendum on self-determination for Southern Sudan.