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Democracy: The cornerstone of Foreign Policy or Idle Words? – International Democracy Day Seminar

International Day of Democracy Seminar

When: Friday 15 September 2023 at 10 am –12 pm (coffee at 9.30)
Where: Auditorium, The Parliament House (Mannerheimintie 30)

Register here by 12 September (opens in a new tab).

Political Parties of Finland for Democracy – Demo Finland warmly welcomes you to celebrate the International Day of Democracy in a seminar that tackles the role of democracy in Finland’s foreign and security policy.

Democracy is increasingly recognised as a factor promoting security and stability. What will the role of democracy be in Finland’s foreign and security policy in the new government term? The International Democracy Day seminar discusses, among other things, what kind of democracy supporter Finland will be as a NATO member and how to co-operate with authoritarian states in accordance with one’s own values.

The keynote address of the event will be given by Professor of Democracy and International Development Nic Cheeseman from the University of Birmingham. He mainly works on democracy, elections and development and has conducted in-country research in a range of African countries. In addition, panellists include politicians from different parties. The event is hosted by journalist Linda Pelkonen.

The event will be streamed online. The seminar is held in Finnish, except for Nic Cheeseman’s keynote speech, which is in English. An interpretation from Finnish to English will be provided. Wheelchair accessible entrance to the auditorium is via different entrance.

Demo Finland organises the event in partnership with the International Affairs Unit of the Parliament of Finland.


9.30 Coffee

10.00 Opening Remarks
– Jouni Ovaska MP (Centre Party), Demo Finland’s Chair
10.10 Panel discussion: Democracy as part of Finland’s foreign policy
Inka Hopsu MP (Greens)
– Antti Kaikkonen MP (Centre Party)
– Juhani Klemetti, Party Secretary (Movement Now)
– Mikko Ollikainen MP (Swedish People’s Party)
– Aura Salla MP (National Coalition Party)
– Jussi Saramo MP (Left Alliance)
– Sari Tanus MP (Christian Democrats)
– Tytti Tuppurainen MP (Social Democratic Party)

– Joakim Vigelius MP (Finns Party)

11.15 Protecting Democracy in an Authoritarian Era
Professor Nic Cheeseman

11.55 Closing Remarks
Rilli Lappalainen, Demo Finland’s Acting Executive Director

12.00 End of Seminar