As most people probably know, democracy means government by the people. But what is the best way to realise the will of the people? In recent years, populist parties that are critical of parts of our democratic system have won increasing numbers of votes in general elections. Incipient xenophobia is generating conflicts and threatening democracy. We are also seeing a decline in the number of countries that are considered democracies. Another growing problem concerns ‘alternative facts’ and half-truths spreading on the internet. What and who can we really trust? Global developments pose considerable challenges to the democratic system and the rule of law, both nationally and internationally.
Uppsala University has a long tradition of research at departments like political science, law, history and peace and conflict research. There is also a growing interdisciplinary research with strong research environments.
Examples of ongoing research
Examples of centres, programmes and projects
Democracy and higher education
In response to increasing threats to democratic processes within the global community, the university has an obligation to assess its contribution to the vitality of democracy.
Uppsala Forum on Democracy, Peace and Justice
The long-term goal of Uppsala Forum is to advance interdisciplinary research and education, as well as to promote internationalization.
Uppsala Conflict Data Program (UCDP)
The world’s main provider of data on organized violence and the oldest ongoing data collection project for civil war, with a history of almost 40 years.
Swedish Institute of International Law (SIFIR)
SIFIR works to promote research and teaching of international law. The institute works towards this goal by purchasing international law literature for law libraries, arranging seminars and conferences and publishing scientific papers. Every year the institute awards a prize for the best thesis in international law: the SIFIR Theses Prize. The board consists of members from the Faculty of Law as well as representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Institute for Russian and Eurasian Studies (IRES)
IRES is an international comprehensive research platform with a multidisciplinary profile. We study developments in Russia and the post-Soviet area from a variety of disciplinary perspectives.
Centre for Multidisciplinary Studies on Racism (CEMFOR)
Coordinates broad-ranging, methodologically inclusive, and multidisciplinary research on racism at Uppsala university.