Europe Adopts New Standards of Democratic Governance and Deliberative Democracy
The adoption marks a strong and clear response to concerns about threats to democratic institutions in Europe.
The Committee of Ministers in the Council of Europe (CoE) has adopted new recommendations to member states on good democratic governance and deliberative democracy.
The first recommendation covers the fundamentals of good democratic governance, covering protection and promotion of democracy; respect for human rights and the rule of law; public ethics and integrity; good administration, and delivery of high-quality public services. It expands on 12 key principles to guide the actions of decision-makers and public institutions at all levels, and to clarify the standards expected.
According to a CoE communique of September 6, the adoption marks a strong and clear response to concerns about threats to democratic institutions in Europe, highlighted in recent annual reports by the Council of Europe Secretary General and Parliamentary Assembly.
The second recommendation aims to help member states safeguard the integrity and effectiveness of deliberative democracy and ensure that deliberative processes complement representative democracy. It provides principles covering the legal framework, the clarity of mandate and design, fair representation, and accountability.
Prepared by the European Committee on Democracy and Governance (CDDG), these two recommendations contribute to the implementation of decisions taken at the 4th Council of Europe Summit of Heads of State and Government (Reykjavík, 16-17 May 2023).
In particular the Reykjavík Declaration – “United around our values” and the Reykjavík Principles for Democracy encourage member states to secure and strengthen democracy and good governance at all levels throughout Europe and actively enable democratic participation at national, regional and local levels through free and fair elections.
As appropriate, according to CoE, all forms of participatory democracy, including deliberative democracy, may be encouraged.
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