Phd Program Democracy under Stress (DUS)

Project: Other

Project participants



The doctoral program investigates how the new political, economic, ecological, and cultural challenges (‚stress factors’) that modern democracies encounter are perceived, dealt with, and solved in view of the existing tension between political legitimacy and restricted performance. It will further look into the implications that different modes of problem-handling have for the ‚survival chances’ of democracy. This twofold research agenda will be analyzed in three fields of study that represent the core functions of democracies: participation, representation, and inclusion.

The first field of study is concerned with how citizens in democratic societies perceive current societal challenges in light of increasing „emancipative“ value orientations and how these perceptions are translated into political behaviour (participatory democracy).

In the framework of the second field of study, the representative capacity of political intermediary organizations as well as political institutions within and outside the nation state will be analyzed (representative democracy).

By means of selected policy fields (e. g. environmental, climate, science and media policy) the third field of study looks into the issue of how new forms of political participation interact with traditional institutions, actors, and processes of representative democracy (inclusive democracy).