A Seat in the Limousine

From Left: CIPE Chair Greg Lebedev, with discussion moderator Andrew Wilson, and speakers Alicia Phillips Mandaville, Chris Maloney, and Beth Tritter at the Democracy and Governance event on September 15, 2016.

From Left: CIPE Chair Greg Lebedev, with discussion moderator Andrew Wilson, and speakers Alicia Phillips Mandaville, Chris Maloney, and Beth Tritter at the Democracy and Governance event on September 15, 2016.

Democratic governance and development go hand in hand. Transparency and the rule of law provided by well-functioning democracies create favorable business environments where firms of all sectors and sizes can thrive. In turn, inclusive economic growth lifts populations out of poverty and strengthens public expectations of accountability. To celebrate the International Day of Democracy, CIPE and the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) held a joint event on September 15, titled “Democracy and Governance: Key Foundations to Sustainable Development.”

Democracy facilitates sustainable development and reducing poverty –primary objectives of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Panelists at this CIPE-MCC forum demonstrated how the SDG goals that pertain to democratic governance are vital to fighting poverty, creating jobs, boosting economic growth, and making sure that development is sustainable. They discussed how strong democratic institutions, a robust rule of law, and inclusive economic policies that create a level playing field for everyone are essential elements of a development agenda with lasting impact.

In his opening remarks, CIPE’s Chairman Greg Lebedev noted,

Our two institutions [CIPE and MCC] are in the same business (…). We begin with a common raison d’etre:  to help countries around the world enjoy a little more freedom and little more economic prosperity by embracing certain democratic behaviors. (…)

 Bad governments will do almost anything to keep their seat in the limousine . . . with a callous indifference to their citizens’ interests or well-being. CIPE recognizes that all the ingredients of “democratic governance” don’t always exist at the same time or in the same place. (…) But all of these initiatives are intended to advance – albeit incrementally – a favorable climate for “democratic governance” and “free market behavior” because one can’t really exist without the other.

Other speakers at the event included: Beth Tritter, Vice President, Department of Policy and Evaluation, MCC; Chris Maloney, Managing Director, Selection and Eligibility, MCC; Alicia Phillips Mandaville, Vice President for Global Development Practice, InterAction; and Andrew Wilson, Executive Director, CIPE.

Greg Lebedev’s full remarks are available as CIPE’s latest Feature Service Article.

Full video of the CIPE/MCC event can be viewed here on the CIPE website.

Anna Kompanek is the Director for Multiregional Programs at CIPE.

Democratic Governance: Unlocking the Keys to the SDG Agenda

From left to right: discussion moderator Andrew Wilson, and speakers Alicia Phillips Mandaville, Chris Maloney, and Beth Tritter

From Left: Discussion moderator Andrew Wilson, with speakers Alicia Phillips Mandaville, Chris Maloney, and Beth Tritter.

The International Day of Democracy was observed on September 15 with a theme of “Democracy and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.”  Created by the UN General Assembly in 2007, the Day of Democracy was intended to provide an opportunity to recognize the importance of democracy in upholding human rights, as enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and to review the state of democracy around the world.

From environmental degradation to food insecurity and energy shortages, today’s global development challenges are complex and multifaceted. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) lay out ambitious yet vital targets for addressing these challenges from ending all forms of poverty and tackling climate change, to improving living standards across the spectrum, and reducing inequalities. Of these goals, SDG 16, which focuses on governance, peace, justice and strong institutions holds a unique place among the rest.

Continue reading

Democracy that Delivers Podcast #33: Camelia Bulat and Carmen Stanila on Helping Business Associations Around the World with Policymaking and Advocacy

Podcast guests Carmen Stanila (far left) and Camelia Bulat (second right) with hosts Ken Jaques and Julie Johnson

Podcast guests Carmen Stanila (far left) and Camelia Bulat (second right) with hosts Ken Jaques and Julie Johnson

In this week’s Democracy That Delivers podcast, CIPE consultants Camelia Bulat and Carmen Stanila talk about working with the private sector and business associations on public policy development and advocacy. They discuss their early work in Romania and later in the Balkans, Moldova, and the Caucuses, and the challenges of managing citizen expectations when countries transition to democratic, free market systems. Bulat and Stanila also talk about how they were able to transfer early lessons learned in Romania to projects elsewhere, and the surprising similarity between the issues and priorities facing business associations all over the world.

Democracy that Delivers Podcast #32: Gina Chon on Economic News from Around the World

Podcast guest Gina Chon (left) with hosts Julie Johnson and Ken Jaques.

Podcast guest Gina Chon (left) with hosts Julie Johnson and Ken Jaques.

On the Democracy That Delivers podcast this week, Thomson Reuters Breakingviews correspondent Gina Chon talks about reporting on economic news from around the world. Chon discusses the challenges journalists face in countries where gaining access to accurate economic information is difficult and where authoritarian governments attempt to control the news on the economy. Chon also talks about how she became a journalist, her experiences working overseas, and what excites her about the way journalism is evolving today.

Follow Gina on Twitter at @GinaChon.

Also, watch a video of Chon participating as a panelist at a CIPE event on The State of Journalism Globally: How Authoritarian Regimes Control Information.

Democracy that Delivers Podcast #31: Kim Holmes Reflects on Democratic Development and the Evolution of American Political Thought

Guest Dr. Kim Holmes (center) with hosts Jennifer Anderson and Ken Jaques.

Guest Dr. Kim Holmes (center) with hosts Jennifer Anderson and Ken Jaques.

Dr. Kim Holmes, who recently returned to the CIPE Board of Directors after a 15 year hiatus, discusses how his views on democratic and economic development have evolved through the years. Holmes discusses specifically how his views on the role of economic development in conflict zones has changed and why. He also talks at length about his new book, The Closing of the Liberal Mind: How Groupthink and Intolerance Define the Left. This podcast is co-hosted by CIPE’s Communications Director Ken Jaques and Program Officer for South Asia Jennifer Anderson

 Learn more about Dr. Holmes and his work.

Disclaimer: The CIPE  Democracy That Delivers podcast encourages guests to freely discuss their experiences, ideas, and opinions. The views expressed by guests are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of the Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE).