Research Programme


The democratic deficit at EU level is well-documented. In approaching this conundrum, researchers, and policy analysts, generally focus on questions of policy making, governance, or increasing small state influence. The debate tends to conclude in recommendations for more qualified majority voting in the Council or in more powers to the European Parliament. These are crucial and valuable approaches. The 89 Initiative aims to take the democracy debate further by exploring more experimental methods of widening democratic participation, such as through the use of mass digital engagement techniques (e.g; e-voting, crowdsourcing) and methods of generating greater inclusivity within the EU’s public institutions. It will also explore the party sector, looking at how the presence of new political formations affects voting behaviour or participation among the politically disenfranchised. Given the emergence of pan-European parties such as DiEM25 or VOLT Europa, this debate is set to kick-off in policy circles and we intend to be contributors to it.

Democratic Participation Programme

Dr. Toni Rodon

Research Director

European Doctor by the Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Dr. Toni Rodon is currently a postdoctoral researcher at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Before that, Mr. Rodon was a postdoctoral researcher at Stanford University (2014-2016) and at the Department of Political and Social Sciences at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra.

He did his Bachelor’s degree in Political and Administration Sciences and a Master in Political and Social Sciences at the UPF. He has also been a visiting student at Nuffield College (University of Oxford), at the Institute for Social Change (University of Manchester) and at the Juan March Foundation (Center for Advanced Study in the Social Sciences).

His research interests include ideology, electoral participation, political geography and political parties, as well as public opinion and the study of nationalism.



Fernando Hortal Foronda

Research Officer

Araceli Irurzun

Research Officer

Olivier Clement

Research Officer

Carlos Rivas Mangas

Research Officer

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