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Initiation of a new European Hannah Arendt Network

The Hannah Arendt Institute for Studies for Totalitarianism takes part in the European Hannah Arendt Network for Democratic Resilience and Renewal.

A strong and resilient democracy armed against the challenges ahead. That is the goal of the new European Hannah Arendt Network on Democratic Resilience and Renewal. Its founding members are the Hannah Arendt Institute in Mechelen, Belgium, the Hannah Arendt Center in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York, the Hannah Arendt Institute for Totalitarianism Studies in Dresden, Germany, and the Hannah Arendt Center in Verona, Italy.

The network aims to unite public and civil society organisations working to promote democratic values, foster democratic renewal and strengthen democratic resilience against anti-pluralist movements and parties, both nationally and in the European Union.

Democratic resilience involves protecting our democratic values and institutions from threats such as authoritarian movements, disinformation and extremism. This requires a strong political community, active citizens and robust institutions that can withstand attacks on liberal democracy.

At the same time, democratic renewal is essential to keep democracy relevant and effective in a rapidly changing world. This means constantly looking for new ways to encourage civic participation, increase transparency and make decision-making more inclusive. This is how we build a future where democratic values remain firmly rooted and everyone has a voice in shaping our society.

The Hannah Arendt Network aims to equip individuals and organisations with the skills, resources, and relationships needed to effectively advocate for a strong democracy.

"We want to commit to international exchange through networking events, study visits and conferences to promote intercultural dialogue, share good practices and learn from experiences in other countries. In addition, we want to organise educational workshops and seminars to train citizens in democratic principles, political processes and active citizenship. We also want to provide opportunities for citizens to exchange ideas by organising and facilitating open debates."

Hannah Arendt's thinking serves as the compass that guides all our activities. Inspired by her insights on critical thinking, active citizenship and plurality, we value the diversity of voices and perspectives and the public space as a forum for dialogue where individuals can come together to shape the shared future of our continent.

"Every generation of Europeans is tasked with building the resilience of European democracy and preserving the promise of freedom, equality and justice, in the present and the future. Democracy is only as strong as the citizens who defend it." (Christophe Busch, Hannah Arendt Institute Mechelen)

Under the Belgian EU Presidency, the directors of the four Hannah Arendt Institutions met in April and decided on this initiative. The establishment of the network was announced today (27/6) at the Conference on Propaganda and Disinformation in Warsaw organised by the Embassy of Belgium and the Delegation of Flanders to Poland and the Baltic States, under the Belgian EU Presidency. The first activities will be organised from autumn onwards.


Want to know more? Read the manifesto of the Hannah Arendt Network on Democratic Resilience and Renewal.
Click here for the pdf.

About the founding members

  • The Hannah Arendt Institute in Mechelen, founded in 2020, has the mission of making scientific knowledge on citizenship, urbanity and diversity accessible to policymakers, professionals and citizens.
  • The Hannah Arendt Center for Politics and Humanities at Bard College, in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York, founded in 2006, provides an intellectual space for passionate, uncensored, non-partisan thinking that redefines and deepens the fundamental questions facing our world.
  • The Hannah Arendt Institute for Totalitarianism Studies in Dresden, founded in 1993, focuses on the study of political, social and cultural developments in totalitarian regimes.
  • The Hannah Arendt Center for Political Studies in Verona, founded in 2016, is a research institute that aims to connect Hannah Arendt's insights with contemporary political research from an interdisciplinary perspective that brings together human and social sciences.

Contact details

For the general outlines of the Hannah Arendt Network

Christophe Busch
Director Hannah Arendt Institute, Mechelen
+32 498 24 68 88

For the role of HAIT


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