Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD)

The Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) at Leuphana University Lüneburg conducts research on democratic structures and procedures in politics and society, economics and the environment. The central focus of research is on questions of legitimacy and performance of democracy in the 21st century. The Center's research activities focus on three main areas: Value Change and Human Empowerment, Party Government and Institutional Change and Participation and Public Policy. In addition, the CSD engages in active promotion of younger researchers as well as in international and regional networking of democracy research institutions.

The Center’s activities include

  • conducting research projects on legitimacy and performance of democracy on a cross-national, comparative as well as a national and local level
  • hosting international research conferences and workshops on cutting-edge themes in democracy research as well as research methods
  • conducting and coordinating international primary data collections, especially the World Value Survey and the database of Central and Eastern European political systems and governments
  • sponsoring doctoral and postdoctoral research at the Center in the field of democratic institutions through full-time fellowships
  • hosting frequent guest lectures of both renowned scholars as well as young researchers
  • facilitating research and graduate training in the study of democracy as well as in research methods and data analysis by organizing PhD seminars and  Summer Schools; participating in inter-university networks of graduate schools and institutes in Northern Germany.
  • assisting to establish contacts between academia and policy-makers


Brief history
The interdisciplinary research centre was founded on July 2, 2003 under the name ‘Center for Central and Eastern European studies’ by the presidium of the University of Lüneburg. On the basis of recommendations by the Academic Commission of Niedersachsen the research centre was reorganized. On June 2, 2004 it was officially re-launched as the ‘Center for the Study of Democracy.’ 
 

15 Years Report (2004-2021)

Tuesday Seminar

Every semester ZDEMO/IPW organize a weekly research colloquium - the so called "Tuesday Seminar." It serves as a forum for ZDEMO members and invited external guests to present their ongoing research and book projects as well as discuss burning questions of research and methods in a critical but fair atmosphere among colleagues.  

The Tuesday Seminar is open for all interested students of political science and related fields and takes place every Tuesday from 16:00 -18:00. You will find the current dates in our calendar. You are most welcome to join!
The archive can be found here

Doctoral Programme "Democracy under Stress"

From 2016-2020 twelve outstanding doctoral students at Leuphana University Lüneburg will be funded with " Ge­org-Chris­toph-Lich­ten­berg-Sti­pen­di­en" from the state of Lower Saxony. The scholarships, worth three-quarters of a million euros, are awarded as part of the "Democracy under Stress" doctoral programme.

The young scientists will investigate current "stress factors" for democracy. The question is how the new political, economic, ecological and cultural challenges facing modern democracies are perceived, dealt with and overcome. It also examines how dealing with the problems affects the stability of democracy. The work will concentrate on the three research fields of participation, representation and inclusion and thus cover the core functions of democracy. Further information can be found here

TED Talk Chris Welzel

In this TED-Talk, Chris Welzel analyzes global cultural change over the recent decades and argues that this change has brought the better moral qualities of our species to the surface--despite the current wave of right-wing populism, which is a reaction to our moral progress.

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