Post-pandemic politics: ‘Building Back Different?’


Post-pandemic political life will likely entail heightened struggles for democracy and a search for new democratic practices that more effectively meet citizens’ needs. That’s one conclusion of a new report from the Carnegie Endowment.

The pandemic is likely to have a long-term impact on the nature of civil society worldwide, with civic activists juggling uneasily to focus on immediate challenges while trying to fashion new economic, political, and geostrategic post-pandemic agendas, say the authors:

  • Civil society has already adapted to the coronavirus pandemic through the growth of self-help activism;
  • Civic actors are helping to rethink of economic models or engaging in efforts to revitalize democratic politics, including through new ideas on technology’s role in post-pandemic politics.
  • Finally, civil society is being reshaped by geopolitical competition: some civil society actors are being pulled into the Chinese and Russian orbits, while others are more firmly resisting political encroachment by these powers.

The global civil society that emerges from the pandemic is set to be more turbulent and more infused with competing notions of democratic freedoms, the report contends. RTWT

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