Democracy, free markets and social change in Europe since the fall of communism: public opinion and expert views by Pew Research Center and International IDEA

International IDEA
103 34 Stockhollm
Image credit: Gavin Stewart@Flickr

Image credit: Gavin Stewart@Flickr

How do Europeans view democracy, free markets and social change since the fall of communism?

The Pew Research Center first posed this question in 1991, as Western-style democracy and markets spread, first to Central and Eastern Europe, and later to the former Soviet Union. In a multi-coutry survey, the Pew Research Center found widespread support for open societies and capitalist competition. Two decades later, when the Pew Center polled again, researchers found growing numbers of Eastern Europeans disenchanted with the transition to representative government and competitive markets.

In this session, Dr Richard Wike of Pew Research Center will explore findings from the newest edition of the Pew Research Center’s research on European attitudes, which builds on the research conducted in 1991 and 2009 with a new survey of 17 nations, including both Western and Eastern European countries, as well as Ukraine, Russia and the United States. The session will examine the degree to which Europeans are united or divided in their attitudes toward democracy, politics, economics and culture.

A brief presentation will follow by Dr Martin Brusis from International IDEA, highlighting the main findings of the Europe chapter of International IDEA’s forthcoming Global State of Democracy Report 2019, contrasting public attitudes towards democracy in Europe with what the GSoD data says about democratic trends in Europe, based mainly on expert surveys.

A Q&A session will follow the discussion.

RSVP to or before 22 October 2019.



Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping America and the world. It does not take policy positions. The Center is a subsidiary of The Pew Charitable Trusts, its primary funder.


RSVP to or before 20 October 2019.   Please note that lunch wraps will be provided.

This event may be photographed or recorded. By registering or accepting to participate, you grant us permission to use your image or voice and statements in our event coverage material for use externally our media outlets, such as International IDEA’s websites and social media platforms.