July 8, 2021
Wunderbar Together 2021: Germany, the U.S., and the Future of Democracy
Next week, under the auspices of Wunderbar Together 2021, the World Affairs Councils of America, the American Council on Germany, and Atlantik-Brücke will partner with World Affairs Councils across the country to hold a series of virtual events that will focus on challenges to democracy in Germany, Europe, and the United States. The experts will discuss the causes of this democratic malaise, analyze how serious these threats are, and examine what can be done to push back against those pressures – with a view to the exploration of how Europe and the U.S. can better collaborate on these issues.
Saving Democracy:
Reinventing Institutions & Practices for the 21st Century
Monday, July 12, at 2:00 - 3:00 PM ET

Jan-Werner Müller
Professor of Politics, Princeton University
Author of Democracy Rules
Democracy is under attack. Rising populism, waning trust in democratic institutions and practices, and a period of unprecedented uncertainty caused by the Covid-19 pandemic have strained democratic institutions.

Jan-Werner Müller will discuss his new book, Democracy Rules, which suggests that we need to re-invigorate the intermediary institutions that have been deemed essential for democracy’s success: political parties and free media. WACA President and CEO Bill Clifford will moderate the conversation.
Democracies in Distress: Europe and the United States
Tuesday, July 13, at 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM ET

Anne Applebaum
Staff Writer, The Atlantic
Pulitzer-prize winning historian and Author of Twilight of Democracy

Dr. David Deißner
Executive Director
On both sides of the Atlantic, popular confidence in political institutions has fallen and voters are increasingly disenchanted with mainstream political parties. What are some of the causes of these trends and what can be done to address them?
Understanding the Rise of Illiberal Politics in Europe and the U.S.
- And What to Do About It
Tuesday, July 13, at 2:00 - 3:00 PM ET

Daniel Ziblatt
Eaton Professor of Government
Harvard University

Paulina Fröhlich
Head of Future Democracy Programme
Das Progressive Zentrum
A number of recent surveys in Europe and the U.S. have shown growing discontent with the way democracy is working, distrust in democratic institutions, and the ability of democracies to confront the many complex challenges facing our societies. What can be done to rebuild confidence and to increase citizen engagement to improve the effectives of our democracies?
Defending Democracy from Misinformation and Fake News
Wednesday, July 14, at 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM ET

Nina Jankowicz
Global Fellow at the Wilson Center

Dr. Hanna Klimpe
Professor of Social Media and Commissioner for Equity
Hamburg University of Applied Sciences

Andrea Shalal
Senior Correspondent

In order for democracies to function effectively, citizens need transparent access to accurate information based on facts. Democratic institutions are being undermined by a proliferation of disinformation which creates chaos, division, and distrust. In many cases, citizens seem to live in parallel universes in which people believe in a completely different set of facts and live in different realities. What can be done to combat misinformation and help guarantee access to truthful, fact-based information?