Reimagining Democracy for the 21st Century: International Cooperation in Regional and Comparative Perspective

In the spring of 2021, ICRS launched a new research and dialogue initiative to explore the sweeping societal, economic, and political changes wrought by COVID-19 and opportunities to reverse the tide of deteriorating global conditions of democracy and human rights, or “autocratization.” The initiative takes the form of a 22-member Expert Working Group that will deliberate through the year to harness existing knowledge and to explore alternatives and recommendations for ways to reimagine democracy’s meaning, institutions, and processes with a view toward deriving recommendations for enhancing international cooperation.

The ICRS Expert Working Group on reimagining democracy is comprised of leading experts from Africa, Europe, Latin America, the U.S., and the Middle East, and will together undertake an analysis of contemporary challenges and crises in democracy exacerbated by the pandemic and responses to control it. The group will orchestrate and oversee background research by ICRS faculty and scholars and develop through dialogue an integrated final report with findings and policy-relevant recommendations for improving international cooperation.

ICRS thanks the DT Institute for their generous support of this initiative.

Expert Working Group Members

Africa Subgroup

  • Dr. Abigail Kabandula—Africa Center Director, University of Denver
  • Dr. Boniface Dulani—Chancellor College
  • Dr. Kathleen Klaus—University of San Francisco
  • Dr. Jeremy Seekings—University of Cape Town
  • Dr. Timothy Shaw—University of Massachusetts Boston

Latin America Subgroup

  • Dr. Oliver Kaplan—Latin America Center Director, University of Denver
  • Dr. Michael Albertus—University of Chicago
  • Dr. Diana Senior-Angulo—University of Costa Rica
  • Dr. Gustavo Flores-Macias—Cornell University
  • Dr. Rafael Ioris—University of Denver
  • Dr. Melissa Martinez—University of Mary Washington
  • Dr. Amy Erica Smith—Iowa State University

Middle East Subgroup

Global Specialists Subgroup

  • Dr. Timothy D. Sisk—ICRS Director, University of Denver
  • Dr. Caroline Hartzell—Gettysburg College
  • Dr. Anna Jarstad—Uppsala University
  • Dr. Massimo Tommasoli—Permanent Observer to the United Nations for International IDEA
  • Dr. Necla Tschirgi—University of San Diego


ICRS is grateful to Kelci Burckhardt for her coordination of this initiative.