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At the end of 2022, the world is trapped beneath the weight of a multitude of old and new problems. There are myriad causes of political and economic instability, including the spiking prices of food and energy, ballooning inflation and an impending recession. These phenomena are occurring in the unstable context of continuing climate change, long unresolved inequality, the Covid-19 pandemic, declining standards of living and the Russian war of aggression in Ukraine.

Democratic institutions are especially important in times of crisis and fear. They ensure open pathways for the information and communication that citizens and governments need to be able to act responsively and effectively. To rebuild and revitalize these institutions and to re-establish trust between the people and their governments, it is necessary to develop new and innovative social contracts that better reflect the changing global environment and that meaningfully prioritize equal access to the mechanisms of participation.

International IDEA’s Global State of Democracy Report 2022 provides an overview of the global and regional trends related to democracy and human rights, along with examples of efforts to reinvigorate social contracts around the world.


Publication date
24 November 2022
Number of pages
978-91-7671-575-8 (PDF)
978-91-7671-576-5 (Print)

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1. Global trends

2. Regional trends

3. Recommendations

4. Conclusion

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The Global State of Democracy 2022

Forging Social Contracts in a Time of Discontent
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