International Governance

New Global Declaration of Democratic Principles

By John Bellinger
Saturday, February 16, 2019, 7:38 AM

At the Munich Security Conference on Feb. 16, a group of former world leaders released a Declaration of Principles aimed at reaffirming shared democratic principles and a rules-based order in response to the rising tide of authoritarianism and anti-democratic trends in many countries. The Declaration for Freedom, Prosperity and Peace is the product of a yearlong task force sponsored by the Atlantic Council and Canadas Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) and led by Steve Hadley and Madeleine Albright among others, in which I and a group of former U.S. government officials participated.

The declaration includes seven overarching principles, loosely modeled on the Atlantic Charter, affirming the right to freedom and justice, democracy and self-determination, peace and security, free markets and equal opportunity, an open and healthy planet, the right to assist others, and collective action. The principles set forth a blueprint of more specific responsibilities for governments, private entities and individuals to support the principles.

The declaration marks the beginning of an organized effort by the Atlantic Council, CIGI and task force members to rebuild global public support for democratic institutions, open markets and alliances.

The full set of principles and subprinciples can be found here. The link includes a space for individuals to sign the declaration to show their support for the principles.

Kudos to Dan Fried, Ash Jain and Barry Pavel of the Atlantic Council for organizing this effort.