The number of democracies today is basically no greater than it was at the start of the century. Many democracies, both long-established ones and newer ones, are experiencing serious institutional debilities and weak public confidence.
How can we reconcile these two contrasting global realities — the unprecedented advance of technologies that facilitate individual empowerment and the overall lack of advance of democracy worldwide? To help answer this question, I asked six experts on political change, all from very different professional and national perspectives. Here are their responses, followed by a few brief observations of my own.