Democratization in support of integrated, sustainable development

A young woman places a folded ballot paper in the ballot box.
The objectives of the SDC include supporting fair and transparent elections, for example in Tunisia. © SDC

Promoting democratic values is essential to inclusive governance. The equal participation of all population groups increases the likelihood of fair and balanced development that benefits everyone. Efforts are made to curb corruption and the abuse of power, minimising the risk of frustration and political confrontation. Promoting democracy is one of Switzerland's foreign policy priorities. 

Democratisation is a key concern for the SDC, which aims to promote community involvement and responsible government action. By enabling different population groups to have an equal say in political life and determine issues that affect their daily lives, diverse interests can be represented, supporting broad-based decision-making. This lends greater legitimacy to political processes and creates a climate of shared responsibility for implementation. Other key democratic principles include power-sharing, checks on power, accountability, the rule of law and equality before the law.

Switzerland supports both democratic institutions and democratic processes, promoting interaction between the mutually reinforcing democratic forces that shape the political system. Promoting gender equality and equal participation and protecting disadvantaged communities are key priorities for Switzerland. In meeting its commitments, Switzerland works from a politically informed perspective, supports solutions that are appropriate in the context and builds on existing structures. It works on the basis of democratic values rather than any specific model.

Democratisation is crucial to inclusive, sustainable development, but it is also an end in itself, ensuring that civil and political rights are upheld and other fundamental social, economic and cultural rights are respected. Democratisation can also contribute to the de-escalation of violent conflicts.

Current projects

Object 1 – 12 of 247

Nurturing Active and Responsible Citiziens

01.01.2027 - 31.12.2030

Molodova's democracy is still young and fragile. The population is disinclined to participate in decision-making, to practice democrtatic values and to demand their rights. Schools have an important role in educating active and responsive citizens, but are not well prepared for it. By improving democratic school governance and introducing practical civic education, Switzerland will support Moldova in raising civic consciousness of chlidren and adolescents, and engaging them in ther communities.


Economic Policy for Inclusive Growth

01.01.2026 - 31.12.2029

The planned intervention aims at supporting inclusive growth that improves the living standards for the Mozambicans, in particular women and youth. It will be pursued through increased analytical capacity and better informed policy making, by means of focussed support to economic analysis and discussion in and between government and non-government institutions. Emphasis on non-government institutions will enhance the demand for and accountability for effective policy making for inclusive growth


Program contribution to OHCHR for promotion and protection of human rights in the oPt

01.01.2025 - 31.12.2029

Switzerland supports the office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt) to contribute to the effective realization of adherence to human rights and international humanitarian law in the oPt and to influence the behaviour of the relevant duty bearers. OHCHR has an exceptional role both in the humanitarian and development spheres in the oPt’s complex context of multiple duty bearers and harsh political and humanitarian realities.


Pathfinders for Peaceful, Just and Inclusive Societies (Sustainable Develoment Goal 16+)

01.01.2024 - 31.12.2030

The promotion of peaceful, just and inclusive societies (SDG16) is integral to the success of the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development. In order to accelerate its implementation, a group of UN Member States are coming together to leveraging intersections within the Agenda (16+) and to accelerate national and international implementation, while building a movement of the willing around three grand challenges. Switzerland is a co-convener, a member and a donor to this initiative.


Supporting Civil Society Organizations in Nicaragua

01.01.2024 - 31.12.2024

SDC and other like-minded donors are engaged in enhancing the democratic and public policy processes in Nicaragua. A strong civil society is essential to the quality and sustainability of this effort. The proposed program will promote citizen participation, strengthen capacities of Civil Society Organizations and foster informed policy dialogue. 


Engaged People - Strong municipalities

01.11.2023 - 31.12.2030

Molodova has the most fragmented sytem of local governments in the South-East Europe. People's dissatisfaction with quality of services is high and participatory decision-making is not common. Local governance reforms launched by the Government are being pursued in a centralized manner. Switzerland will support moldova through a two-pronged approach supporting citizens (in enhancing participation and social accountability) and institutions (in improving public service provision), particularly in rural areas.  


Strengthening democratic local governance

01.01.2023 - 30.12.2026

The project aims at supporting the democratic transition and the peace efforts in Myanmar. Using a decentralized budget support approach to all townships of one state in the Southeast of the country, it will strengthen township’s participatory planning and budgeting capacity. The project will also deepen the community’s capacity to demand public services. Additionally it will support national level policy discussions based on this experience.


SYNAD - Programme d’Appui au Système National de Décentralisation

01.01.2023 - 31.12.2026

Au Burkina Faso, les institutions nationales sont encore insuffisamment capables d’assurer leurs tâches de coordination, de financement et d’appui technique à la décentralisation. La Suisse soutient les institutions chargées de mettre en œuvre cette réforme, afin d’accroître l’accès aux services de base, de réduire la pauvreté et de prévenir l’extrémisme violent. Elle reste engagée en combinant ses instruments de coopération et montre son soutien dans un contexte de crises sécuritaire et humanitaire.  


Resilient culture & art for social change

01.12.2022 - 31.12.2026

Culture and arts play a key role to promote Palestinian identities, dialogue and freedom of expression. Switzerland contributes with this proposal to a diverse, innovative and more resilient cultural sector able to foster democratic values and voice the needs and aspirations of the civil society. The programme employs art as entry point for social dialogue and builds the entrepreneurial capacities of emerging artists in partnership with Qattan Foundation and Welfare Association.  


Appui à la Fédération Nationale des Communes Tunisiennes et mise en place du Fonds Municipal de Compétence Générale

01.11.2022 - 30.06.2027

Le projet vise à appuyer le processus de décentralisation en Tunisie en renforçant le rôle de la Fédération Nationale des Communes Tunisiennes (FNCT) en tant qu’acteur de soutien aux communes et de plaidoyer politique pour la décentralisation. Dans le cadre de ce projet, la FNCT va appuyer techniquement et financièrement 17 communes pilotes dans la mise en œuvre de leurs plans de développement locaux. Il s’agit d’une contribution à un projet financé par l’Union Européenne. 


DEPAC 3 - Programme d’appui à la décentralisation et à la participation citoyenne

01.10.2022 - 31.10.2026

La Suisse promeut la décentralisation au niveau national et appuie les collectivités territoriales de quatre régions du Burkina Faso. Dans un contexte marqué par une insécurité croissante, elle renforce leur capacité à faire face aux urgences, à développer la cohésion sociale et la participation citoyenne et à offrir des services de base de qualité aux populations. Ce programme de type nexus contribue à prévenir l’extrémisme violent et à stabiliser le pays, dans l’intérêt de la Suisse.


Citizen Security

01.09.2022 - 30.06.2024

The program supports the Security Ministry and the National Police of Honduras in professionalizing institutional processes with a focus on human rights and gender as well as on community policing. In the Gulf of Fonseca and La Mosquitia, the program consolidates local coordination mechanisms for violence prevention involving justice and security sector actors, local governments and civil society. During the exit phase, the aim is to institutionalize the achieved results.

Object 1 – 12 of 247