From Votes to Voices: Expanding European Democracy

From Votes to Voices: Expanding European Democracy


In a time of electoral promises and party-centered politics, we ask: what would our democracies look like if we were more than mere voters? How can complex democracies listen to the voices of citizens on a permanent basis?

FIDE's Annual Event aims to explore and push the boundaries of our existing democratic systems. The European Elections campaign is an opportunity to imagine new ways of engaging in public decisions. Votes are exclusionary, they reduce citizens’ priorities to the most salient and polarizing issues. Deliberative Democracy, as a concept and practice, enriches representative democracies by enabling a more inclusive and continuous engagement of citizens. It opens avenues for people to contribute to policymaking beyond the periodic act of voting. This approach acknowledges that citizens' views are diverse and complex, and it seeks to accommodate this diversity in political decision-making.

The focus will not be on fleeting electoral promises but on sustainable, tangible actions and real- world examples of how deliberation and participation are being integrated into democratic systems across Europe. These examples will serve as seeds of hope and inspiration, demonstrating that change is not only possible but already happening.

More Information & Registration


14.00 – 14.20 | Welcome by FIDE

14.20 – 14.50 | A conversation with Jakub Wygnanski, Shipyard Foundation

14.50 – 15.30 | Citizens’ Voices: an interview exploring new forms of doing democracy.

15.30 – 16.00 | Coffee break

16.00 – 17.00 | Youth deliberation

                       | Deliberation at the local level

                       | EU level deliberation: what is next?

17.00 – 17.30 | Closing remarks (TBC)

17.30 | Informal drinks


Les Ateliers des Tanneurs, Rue des Tanneurs 60A, 1000 Bruxelles, Belgium

50.83987, 4.34655