Geneva Democracy Dialogue: How can Narratives help Revitalise Democracy in Europe?

By invitation only

23 May 2024

14.00-16.30 CEST


We are excited to announce that Caux Initiatives of Change Foundation has embarked on a 3-year programme on how democracy be revitalised across Europe and the world. This programme includes not only a flagship event, the Caux Democracy Forum (15 - 19 July 2024) but also the Geneva Democracy Dialogues, starting on 23 May 2024.

We are delighted to hold the launch of the Geneva Democracy Dialogues on 23 May, 2024  (14:00 - 16:30 CEST) at the EU Delegation to the UN on the topic: "How can Narratives help Revitalise Democracy in Europe?". This event is organised with the support of the European Union Delegation and in partnership with the Kofi Annan Foundation.

This event is taking place against the backdrop of a global “mega election year” and on the heels of the European elections. The theme of this first dialogue is: "How can Narratives help Revitalise Democracy in Europe?"

Our 2-hour event seeks to increase understanding of the power of narratives on democracy, in particular positive narratives. We will use a format with 3-4 short interventions that serve as discussion starters and then will facilitate a conversation with participants from diplomatic missions, international organisations and civil society.

Please note that this event is by invitation only.



The Geneva Democracy Dialogues are designed to facilitate open, inclusive, and informed discussions on challenges for democracy, foster collaboration and innovation, and generate actionable recommendations.

In 2024, we are planning two Geneva Democracy Dialogues: one in advance of the European elections and the other as part of the Geneva Democracy Week in October 2024.  Each event will follow a Wilton Park-style dialogue with 3-4 conversation starters, followed by an exchange with 20-25 hand-selected participants from member states, international organisations and civil society. 

The goal of this first dialogue is to increase understanding of the power of positive narratives on democracy.



14.00-14.15: Welcome

  • Welcome remarks by Ambassador Thomas Wagner, Deputy Head of EU Delegation to the United Nations, Ignacio Packer, Executive Director, Caux Initiatives of Change Foundation, and Corinne Momal-Vanian, Executive Director, Kofi Annan Foundation


14.20-15.40: Core discussion led by Ignacio Packer. Guest discussants will serve as conversation starters and will focus on:

  • What the research shows us on positive/negative narratives and democracy from Maryna Hovorukhina, Expert in strategic communications at Common Sense Communications
  • Role of empathy in narratives and revitalizing democracy from Elizabeth Laskar, Creators of Peace
  • Civil society perspectives on why narrative matters for democracy from Declan O’Brien, Head, Democracy, Kofi Annan Foundation and Rilli Lappalainen, President CONCORD and Director of Sustainable development at Fingo
  • Representative from Peace and Human Rights Division of Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs


15:40 – 16:00 Wrap-up and Next Steps followed by networking coffee/pastries






Along its almost 80 years of history, the Caux Initiatives of Change Foundation’s approach is that democracy functions well when ordinary people and people in power take responsibility and aim to live by high moral values.

As a global people’s movement, Caux Initiatives of Change has a significant track record in offering a space and approaches for the rights and responsibilities of individuals, the importance of popular participation, and the protection of fundamental freedoms.