Note to editors - 177(2008)

“E-Democracy, who dares?” - Council of Europe forum in Madrid to assess the potential of e-democracy to increase participation

Strasbourg, 08.10.2008 – Representatives of the 47 member states of the Council of Europe will meet in Madrid on 15-17 October in the 2008 Forum for the Future of Democracy to discuss the potential of the new information technologies to strengthen democracy and increase participation.

The forum, held under the theme “E-democracy, who dares?”, will be structured in six parallel workshops: e-participation, e-participation at local level, ICT in electoral processes, e-inclusion, e-democracy from the grassroots and regulatory context.

Among other issues the participants will discuss the role of e-activism and e-campaigning which have boomed in the last years and are becoming a key dimension of political life. They will also assess recent developments and challenges on e-voting.

The Forum will be opened at 16.00 p.m. on Wednesday 15 October by Lluis Maria de Puig, president of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, Terry Davis, Secretary General, Yavuz Mildon, president of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, and Christer Hallerbyr, State Secretary of the Ministry of Integration and Gender Equality of Sweden, representing the Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe.

The meeting is organised by the Council of Europe in cooperation with the Spanish Public Administration Ministry and the support of the City of Madrid. The forum will take place at the Palacio de Congresos Municipal in Madrid and is open to the press. The Forum’s conclusions will be presented by the general rapporteurs on Friday 17 October at 11.00 a.m.

Accreditation requests should be sent to


Background note: The Forum for the Future of Democracy, which is organised every year by the Council of Europe, aims at strengthening political freedoms and citizen’s participation. It was created in 2005 by the Council of Europe member states due to signs of growing political disaffection and declining turnout in elections. Forum for the Future of Democracy website

Press contact:

Jaime Rodríguez, Tel. +33 (0) 390 21 47 04; Mob. +33 (0) 689 99 50 42,

Council of Europe Press Division
Tel: +33 (0)3 88 41 25 60
Fax:+33 (0)3 88 41 39 11