Protecting Legitimacy in Politics

In recent years the world has witnessed the increased capacity of transnational criminal networks. This threatens the legitimacy of democratic institutions and political processes in both emerging and established democracies. Violence and intimidation continue to be used by these networks in order to contest and challenge state institutions.  Lately, more subtle methods have developed in the background to manipulate political processes, particularly through developing links to politicians and political parties. These include illicit funding of political campaigns, money laundering schemes transcending nation-state boundaries, the establishment of new political parties and movements, and even common economic ventures and legitimate businesses.

International IDEA’s Protecting Legitimacy in Politics is a global initiative designed to address these issues by a) generating empirical knowledge about this phenomena in selected countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, West Africa and Europe; b) fostering policy debates with decision makers at local, regional and global levels; and c) partnering with inter-governmental organizations in the implementation of locally-led targeted processes at the national level.

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Our partners

  • The Institute for Security and Development Policy (ISDP) -Baltic Sea region project 2011-2012.
  • The Inter-Governmental Action Group against Money Laundering in West Africa (GIABA) -West Africa project 2011-2012.
  • The Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD) –Latin America project 2012-2013.
  • The Institute for International Relations (Clingendael) - Latin America project 2012-2013.
  • The Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (FES) –Colombia project 2011-2012.

Meetings and Activities

  • Conference on "Delivering Effective Political Party Assistance: Challenges for policy makers and practitioners", DFID/FCO/IDEA (Wilton Park, March 2010).
  • Seminar on Organized Crime and State Capture, NIMD/CIC-NYU/IDEA (Lima –Peru, 9-11 February 2011).
  • Expert Consultation Meeting on Protecting Legitimacy in Politics, IDEA (Stockholm –Sweden, 14-16 November 2011).
  • International seminar “Dimensions of Security”, NIMD/Agora/IDEA (Quito –Ecuador, 1-2 December 2011).
  • Debate “Camino A Cartagena: Experiencias nacionales y subregionales para reducir la influencia del crimen organizado en la política” ahead of the Sixth Summit of the Americas (Lima –Peru, 5 March 2012).
  • Latvia National Workshop “Legal and Policy Instruments for Protecting Political Processes”, ISDP/IDEA (Riga –Latvia, 5 June 2012). Estonia National Workshops “Legal and Policy Instruments for Protecting Political Processes”, ISDP/IDEA (Tallinn –Estonia, 14 June 2012).
  • Lithuania National Workshops “Legal and Policy Instruments for Protecting Political Processes”, ISDP/IDEA (Vilnius –Lithuania, 19 June 2012).
  • Panel “Criminal Networks and Politics: A New Hybridization of Democracy?”, IPSA World Congress (Madrid –Spain, 9 July 2012).

International IDEA research

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