22 Dec 2007 - 12 Mar 2021
Board of Advisors
Members of POMED’s Advisory Board lend strategic and developmental expertise and guidance to the organization. The Advisory Board includes individuals who have demonstrated a commitment to supporting democracy in the Middle East and/or to examining America’s impact on political reform in the region.
Director of the Institute for Middle East Studies at George Washington University.
Nathan Brown is director of the Institute for Middle East Studies at George Washington University, specializing in government and politics of the Middle East, democratization and constitutionalism, and rule of law in the Arab world. Brown also serves as a nonresident senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
Brown was previously a scholar in residence at the Middle East Institute. He has recently been a member of the international advisory committee on drafting the Palestinian constitution and consultant to the UNDP’s program on governance in the Arab world.
Brown’s most recent book, Resuming Arab Palestine, presents research on Palestinian society and governance after the establishment of the Palestinian Authority. Other published works include: Peasant Politics in Modern Egypt (1990); The Rule of Law in the Arab World: Courts in Egypt and the Gulf (1997); Constitutions in a Non-Constitutional World: Arab Basic Laws and the Prospects for Accountable Government (2001); and Palestinian Politics After the Oslo Accords: Resuming Arab Palestine (2003).
A graduate of the University of Chicago, Brown has a MA and PhD in politics and Near Eastern Studies from Princeton University. His dissertation received the Malcolm Kerr award from the Middle East Studies Association in 1987.
Associate Professor of Government & Co-Director of the Democracy and Governance Studies, Georgetown University.
Daniel Brumberg is an Associate Professor of Government at Georgetown University and Co-Director of the Democracy and Governance Studies at GU. In addition to teaching at Georgetown University, Daniel Brumberg serves as a special adviser for the United States Institute of Peace’s Muslim World Initiative, where he focuses on democratization and political reform in the Middle East and the wider Islamic world. He has previously served as a Senior Scholar Carnegie Endowment’s Democracy and Rule of Law Project (2003–04), a Jennings Randolph senior fellow at USIP, (1999-2000), a Mellon junior fellow at Georgetown University (1998), and a visiting fellow at the International Forum on Democratic Studies (1998).
Before coming to Georgetown, he was a visiting professor in the Department of Political Science at Emory University and a visiting fellow in the Middle East Program in the Jimmy Carter Center. He has also taught at Sciences-Po in Paris, and at the University of Chicago, where he lectured in the Graduate School of Business and at in the Division of Social Sciences.
Dr. Bumberg is a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Democracy, the advisory board of the International Forum on Democratic Studies, and the editorial board of the American Political Science Association’s quarterly, Political Science and Politics.
Dr. Brumberg has assisted several nongovernmental organizations in the Arab world, including the Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs. He has also served as a consultant to the National Democratic Institute, the Democracy and Governance Bureau of the United States Agency for International Development, and Freedom House. He writes a bi-monthly blog for the Washington Post/Georgetown University web page “On Faith
He received his B.A. from Indiana University and a his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. Dr. Brumberg speaks Arabic, French and some Hebrew.
President, Middle East Institute
Ambassador Wendy Chamberlin has been President of the Middle East Institute since March 2007. A 29-year veteran of the US Foreign Service, she served as US Ambassador to Pakistan from 2001 to 2002.
Chamberlin has extensive experience in counter-terrorism, having served as Director of Global Affairs and Counter-Terrorism at the National Security Council (1991-1993) and as Deputy in the Bureau of International Counter-Narcotics and Law Programs (1999-2001).
As Assistant Administrator in the Asia-Near East Bureau for the US Agency for International Development (USAID) from 2002 to 2004, Ambassador Chamberlin directed civilian reconstruction programs in Iraq and Afghanistan and development assistance programs in the Middle East and East Asia.
Other assignments included US Ambassador to the Laos People’s Democratic Republic (1996-1999), Director of Press and Public Affairs for the Near East Bureau (1991-1993), Deputy Chief of Mission in the US Embassy in Kuala Lumpur (1993-1996), Arab-Israeli Affairs (1982-1984) and other postings in Morocco, Pakistan, Malaysia, Laos and Zaire. Prior to joining MEI, Chamberlin served as Deputy High Commissioner for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (2004-2006).
A graduate of Northwestern University, Chamberlin has a MS in Education from Boston University and participated in the Executive Program at Harvard University. She also holds an honorary PhD from Northwestern University.
Senior Fellow and Director, American Strategy Program
Steven Clemons directs the American Strategy Program at the New America Foundation, which aims to promote a new American internationalism that combines a tough-minded realism about America’s interests in the world with a pragmatic idealism about the kind of world order best suited to America’s democratic way of life. He is also a Senior Fellow at New America, and previously served as Executive Vice President.
Publisher of the popular political blog The Washington Note, Mr. Clemons is a long-term policy practitioner and entrepreneur in Washington, D.C. He has served as Executive Vice President of the Economic Strategy Institute, Senior Policy Advisor on Economic and International Affairs to Senator Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) and was the first Executive Director of the Nixon Center.
Prior to moving to Washington, Mr. Clemons served for seven years as Executive Director of the Japan America Society of Southern California, and co-founded with Chalmers Johnson the Japan Policy Research Institute, of which he is still Director. He is a Member of the Board of the Clarke Center at Dickinson College, a liberal arts college in Carlisle, Pa., as well as an Advisory Board Member of the C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience at Washington College in Chestertown, Md. He is also a Board Member of the Global Policy Innovations Program at the Carnegie Council on Ethics and International Affairs and on the advisory board of the Robert Bosch Foundation Alumni Association.
Mr. Clemons writes frequently on matters of foreign policy, defense, and international economic policy. His work has appeared in many of the major leading op-ed pages, journals, and magazines around the world.
Lorne W. Craner
President, International Republican Institute
Lorne Craner returned to the International Republican Institute (IRI) as President in August, 2004, following his unanimous selection by IRI’s Board of Directors. He has led the strengthening of IRI’s programs in countries such as China, Colombia, Pakistan, Russia and Turkey. Since 2004, IRI has broadened its work in areas such as governance, women’s participation, access for the disabled, and the use of technology in democracy promotion. IRI has also built an unprecedented level of cooperation with U.S. and foreign democracy building organizations. IRI held its two most successful fundraisers following Craner’s return; the first honoring President George W. Bush, the second honoring Liberian President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf and First Lady Laura Bush.
Previously, Craner was Assistant Secretary for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor for Secretary of State Colin Powell. Among other accomplishments, he contributed to the conception and implementation of President Bush’s approach to democratization in the Middle East, sharpened the administration’s focus on human rights in Central Asia, initiated the first U.S. government programs to advance democracy in China, and helped construct the Millennium Challenge Account’s “good governance’ criteria. Upon his departure from the State Department, Secretary Powell presented Craner with the Distinguished Service Award, the department’s highest honor.
From 1995 to 2001, Craner, as IRI’s President, led the institute to new levels of programmatic achievement, fundraising, financial accountability and news coverage. He joined IRI as Vice President for programs in 1993. From 1992-93 he served at the National Security Council as Director of Asian Affairs, and from 1989-92 was Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Legislative Affairs. Craner was Senator John McCain’s legislative assistant (LA) for foreign policy from 1986-89; he began his career as then-Congressman Jim Kolbe’s foreign policy LA.
In June 2007, Craner was again confirmed by the U.S. Senate, to a seat on the Millennium Challenge Corporation’s Board of Directors. Craner chairs the Secretary of State’s Advisory Committee on Democracy Promotion and sits on the Boards of the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations and the Internews Network. A member of the Council on Foreign Relations, he has testified on numerous occasions before House and Senate Committees.
Craner received his master’s degree in National Security Studies from Georgetown University and his bachelor’s degree from Reed College in Portland, Oregon.
Director of the Center for Democracy, Development, and Rule of Law at Stanford University
Larry Diamond is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, founding coeditor of the Journal of Democracy, and codirector of the International Forum for Democratic Studies of the National Endowment for Democracy. He has also advised the U.S. Agency for International Development (whose 2002 report, Foreign Aid in the National Interest, he coauthored), the World Bank, the United Nations, the State Department, and other governmental and nongovernmental organizations. His book The Spirit of Democracy: The Struggle to Build Free Societies Throughout the World (Times Books, 2008) explores the sources of global democratic progress and stress and the future prospects of democracy.
Diamond is professor by courtesy of political science and sociology at Stanford University, where he teaches courses on democratic development and coordinates the democracy program of the Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law. In 2007, he was named Teacher of the Year by the Associated Students of Stanford University for teaching that “transcends political and ideological barriers.” That year he also received Stanford’s Dinkelspiel Award for “his inspired teaching and commitment to undergraduate education” and “for the example he sets as a scholar and public intellectual.”
During the first three months of 2004, Diamond served as a senior adviser to the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad. Since then, he has lectured and written on U.S. policy in Iraq and the wider challenges of postconflict reconstruction. He has also participated in policy working groups on Iraq and the Middle East, and, with Abbas Milani and Michael McFaul, he coordinates Hoover’s Iran Democracy Project.
Among his other published works are Squandered Victory: The American Occupation and the Bungled Effort to Bring Democracy to Iraq (Times Books, 2005), Developing Democracy: Toward Consolidation (1999), Promoting Democracy in the 1990s (1995), and Class, Ethnicity, and Democracy in Nigeria (1989). He recently edited the books Islam and Democracy in the Middle East (with Marc F. Plattner and Daniel Brumberg), Assessing the Quality of Democracy (with Leonardo Morlino), The State of India’s Democracy (with Marc Plattner and Sumit Ganguly), and Democracy in Developing Countries, with Juan Linz and Seymour Martin Lipset.
Editor, Arab Reform Bulletin at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
US State department 1986-2003
Michele Durocher Dunne is editor of the Arab Reform Bulletin, a monthly English/Arabic journal published by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace offering analysis from U.S.-based and Middle Eastern political experts.
A Department of State official from 1986-2003, Dunne served in a variety of assignments related to the Middle East including the National Security Council staff, the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, the U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem, and the Secretary of State’s Policy Planning Staff.
Dunne writes frequently on political reform in the Middle East. Among her publications are Carnegie Endowment papers on integrating democracy promotion into U.S. Middle East policy and evaluating Egyptian reform, as well as Democracy in Contemporary Egyptian Political Discourse, published in 2003.
Dunne was also a visiting assistant professor at Georgetown University 2003-6, teaching courses in Arabic language, political discourse analysis, and U.S. relations with the Middle East. She holds a PhD from Georgetown University in Arabic language and linguistics.
President and CEO, Common Cause
Member of the United States House of Representatives,
Bob Edgar has served since May 2006 as president and CEO of Common Cause, a national nonpartisan, non-profit “citizens” lobby working to make government at all levels more honest, open and accountable, and to connect citizens with their democracy. Prior to joining Common Cause, Edgar was the general secretary of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA for seven years.
Elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1974 to represent the Seventh Congressional District of Pennsylvania, outside of Philadelphia, Bob was part of the congressional class nicknamed “the Watergate babies,” those elected in the wake of the Watergate scandal and who led sweeping reforms of Congress.
During six terms in the US House, Bob led efforts to improve public transportation, fought wasteful water projects and authored the community Right to Know provision of Super Fund legislation. He also served on the House Select Committee on Assassinations that investigated the deaths of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and President John F. Kennedy.
Edgar received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Lycoming College, Williamsport, Pa., and a master of divinity degree from the Theological School of Drew University, Madison, N.J. He has also been president of the Claremont School of Theology. He holds five honorary doctoral degrees.
Edgar serves on the board of the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, Drew University, Families USA, the National Coalition on Health Care, the Environmental and Energy Study Institute, the National Alternative Medicine Foundation, the Project for Nuclear Awareness, the Center for International Policy, the National Religious Partnership for the Environment, and the Churches’ Center for Theology and Public Policy.
Director, Middle East Program at the Woodrow Wilson Center
Haleh Esfandiari, the Director of the Middle East Program at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, has had a rich and varied career. In her native Iran, she was a journalist, served as deputy secretary general of the Women’s Organization of Iran, and was the deputy director of a cultural foundation where she was responsible for the activities of several museums and art and cultural centers. She taught Persian language at Oxford University and, prior to coming to the Wilson Center, from 1980 to 1994, she taught Persian language and contemporary Persian literature and courses on the women’s movement in Iran at Princeton University.
Haleh Esfandiari is the author of Reconstructed Lives: Women and Iran’s Islamic Revolution (1997), editor of (1977), co-author of Iranian Women: Past, Present and FutureBest Practices: Progressive Family Laws in Muslim Countries, the co-editor of The Economic Dimensions of Middle Eastern History (1990) and also of the of the multi-volume memoirs of the famed Iranian scholar, Ghassem Ghani.
Her articles have appeared in essay collections in a number of books as well as in Foreign Policy, Journal of Democracy, Princeton Papers in Near Eastern Studies, New Republic, Wilson Quarterly, Chronicle of Higher Education and Middle East Review. Her Op-Ed, “Held in My Homeland,” appeared in the Sept. 16, 2007 Outlook section of the Washington Post. Haleh Esfandiari is the first recipient of a yearly award established in her name, the Haleh Esfandiari Award was presented to Dr. Esfandiari by a group of businesswomen and activists from countries across the Middle East and North Africa region, on the occasion of a conference sponsored by the Wilson Center, Women Entrepreneurs: Business and Legal Reform in the MENA Region, held in Amman, Jordan, May 20-May 22. She is also the recipient of the Special American Red Cross Award (2008), an honorary degree from Georgetown University Law Center (2008), the Women’s Equality Award from the National Council of Women’s Organizations (2008), a recipient of a MacArthur Foundation grant, and was a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars from 1995 to 1996. She also serves on the Board of Advisors of the Project on Middle East Democracy.
While visiting her mother in Iran in December 2006, Esfandiari was prevented from leaving the country by agents of Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence and interrogated and held in the country for the next eight months, four of them at Tehran’s Evin Prison. She is currently writing a book on her experience.
Professor of Law, Harvard University
Adjunct Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations
Noah Feldman specializes in constitutional studies, with particular emphasis on the relationship between law and religion, constitutional design, and the history of legal theory. Professor of law at Harvard Law School, he is also a contributing writer for the New York Times Magazine and an adjunct senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. Before joining the Harvard faculty, Feldman was Cecelia Goetz Professor of Law at New York University School of Law. He was named a Carnegie Scholar in 2005. In 2004 he was a visiting professor at Yale Law School and a fellow of the Whitney Humanities Center. In 2003 he served as senior constitutional advisor to the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq, and subsequently advised members of the Iraqi Governing Council on the drafting of the Transitional Administrative Law or interim constitution. From 1999 to 2002, he was a Junior Fellow of the Society of Fellows at Harvard University. Before that he served as a law clerk to Justice David H. Souter of the U.S. Supreme Court (1998 to 1999) and to Chief Judge Harry T. Edwards of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit (1997 to 1998). He received his A.B. summa cum laude in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations from Harvard University in 1992. Selected as a Rhodes Scholar, he earned a D.Phil. in Islamic Thought from Oxford University in 1994. He received his J.D. from Yale Law School in 1997, serving as Book Reviews Editor of the Yale Law Journal. He is the author of four books: Fall and Rise of the Islamic State (Princeton University Press 2008); Divided By God: America’s Church-State Problem and What We Should Do About It (Farrar, Straus & Giroux 2005); What We Owe Iraq: War and the Ethics of Nation building (Princeton University Press 2004); and After Jihad: America and the Struggle for Islamic Democracy (Farrar, Straus & Giroux 2003).
Chair of the Board of Directors, Amideast
Former Chair of the Board of Directors, Amnesty International USA
Mary Gray is chair of the Board of Directors of AMIDEAST, a nonprofit organization dedicated to strengthening mutual understanding and cooperation between Americans and the peoples of the Middle East and North Africa.
Gray has been chair of the Board of Directors of Amnesty International USA, International Treasurer of Amnesty International, and chair of its international Development Committee. She has also been a member of boards and committees of such organizations as the American Civil Liberties Union, the American Middle East Education Foundation, and the American Association of University Professors. Gray was the first president of the Association for Women in Mathematics. President Bush awarded her the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Engineering, and Mathematics Mentoring.
Gray has lectured throughout the United States, Europe, the Middle East, and Latin America. Her work has been supported by grants from the National Science Foundation, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, and the Karim Rida Said Foundation in London. In 2003 she worked on a USAID project on education in Iraq and is currently a consultant to the Kurdistan Regional Government on statistics and information technology.
Gray has previously taught at the University of Kansas, the University of California, Berkeley, and California State University, Hayward. Her undergraduate degree is from Hastings College, her Ph.D. is from the University of Kansas, and she has studied in Germany on a Fulbright grant. She also has a J.D. degree from Washington College of Law, American University and is a member of the District of Columbia and U.S. Supreme Court bars. She has been awarded honorary degrees by the University of Nebraska and Hastings College.
Saad Eddin Ibrahim
Founder, Ibn Khaldun Center for Development Studies
Saad Eddin Ibrahim is one of the leading pro-democracy activists in the Arab world. He is professor of sociology at the American University in Cairo and founder of the Ibn Khaldun Center for Development Studies, an independent research institution dedicated to promoting democratization and accountable government in the Middle East. He is the author of numerous articles and books, including Egypt, Islam and Democracy: Critical Essays.
Ibrahim is a former political prisoner, having spent nearly three years in jail for his staunch opposition to Egyptian autocracy. His case attracted worldwide attention and the support of human rights organizations across the globe. Ibrahim, who holds dual Egyptian and American citizenship, has become one of the most sought-out speakers on democracy promotion and Egyptian politics. He is a frequent visitor to the U.S. and an outspoken advocate for a more consistent American policy toward the Middle East. He is regularly asked to advise and consult with senior level officials in the U.S. government, including the State Department and the National Security Council. Ibrahim was the 2004 recipient of the Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy’s annual Muslim Democrat of the Year Award.
Senior Transatlantic Fellow, German Marshall Fund of the United States
Member of the United States House of Representatives, 1985-2007
Jim Kolbe currently serves as a Senior Transatlantic Fellow for the German Marshall Fund of the United States, advising on trade and development matters as well as issues of effectiveness of US assistance to foreign countries. As co-chair of the Transatlantic Taskforce on Development, Kolbe heads a team of international experts in formulating strategic recommendations for U.S. and European development projects.
Before joining The German Marshall Fund, Jim Kolbe served in the United States House of Representatives, elected for eleven consecutive terms to represent the Eighth congressional district of Arizona. While in Congress, Kolbe served for 20 years on the Appropriations Committee of the House of Representatives. He chaired the Treasury, Post Office and Related Agencies subcommittee for four years, and for the last six years in Congress, he chaired the Foreign Operations, Export Financing and Related Agencies subcommittee.
Before serving in Congress, Kolbe served in the U.S. Navy from 1965 to 1969, and from 1970 to 1977 he served in the U.S. Navy Reserve. Kolbe graduated from Northwestern University with a BA degree in Political Science, and earned his MBA from Stanford University with an MBA and a concentration in economics.
Kolbe also serves as an adjunct Professor in the College of Business at the University of Arizona, and serves on a part time basis as strategic consultant with McLarty Associates.
Senior Financial Advisor, Merrill Lynch
Member of the United States House of Representatives, 1983-1993
Jim Moody has extensive financial and economic experience. Currently, Moody is a Senior Financial Advisor to Merrill Lynch in Washington DC and previously served as a Financial Advisor to Morgan Stanley.
From 1998 to 2000, Moody served as President and CEO of InterAction, an association of 165 international NGOs working in the fields of disaster relief, refugee assistance and economic development located in Washington, D.C., and from 1995 to 1998 as Vice President and CFO of the International Fund for Agriculture, a United Nations agency based in Rome, Italy.
As a member of the United States House of Representatives representing Wisconsin from 1983 to 1993, Moody served on the Subcommittees of Heath, Social Security, Infrastructure and Water Resources of the Ways and Means and Public Works Committees. Moody has taught at several campuses, including University of California in Berkeley, the University of Wisconsin, Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School and New York University.
He received his B.A. from Haverford College, his MPA from Harvard University, and his Ph.D. at the University of California, Berkeley. Moody served in the Peace Corps and CARE in Yugoslavia, Iran, and Pakistan.
Vice President, Council for a Community of Democracies
Ambassador Mark Palmer is a long-time fighter for democracy and human rights both inside and outside government. He participated in the American civil rights movement and remains active in pursuit of better opportunities for African-Americans. In the U.S. State Department from 1964 to 1990, he specialized and served in the communist countries, wrote speeches for six secretaries of state and three presidents, including President Reagan’s speech to the British Parliament in 1982 which led to the establishment of the National Endowment for Democracy, and was Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe and then U.S. Ambassador to Hungary during the crucial period for bringing down Europe’s communist dictators. For his contributions to assisting with the liberation of Poland, the Baltic States, and Hungary he has received awards from democratic governments and human rights organizations.
After the fall of the Berlin Wall, Ambassador Palmer became an investor in the former communist countries, including establishing the first national independent commercial television stations in six countries, and building a major real estate complex at Checkpoint Charlie in Berlin. He is President of Capital Development Company LLC, which invests in the United States and overseas. Ambassador Palmer is Vice Chairman of the Board of Freedom House and the Center for Communications, Health and the Environment and also serves on the boards of the International Centre for Democratic Transition, SAIS Johns Hopkins University, Institute for the Study of Diplomacy at Georgetown University, American Academy of Diplomacy, and New Tang Dynasty Television. He is a member of the Secretary of State’s Democracy Advisory Committee. He graduated from Yale University in 1963, Phi Beta Kappa and Magna Cum Laude. He is the author of “Breaking the Real Axis of Evil: How to Oust the World’s Last Dictators by 2025”, whose policy recommendations form the basis for the ADVANCE Democracy Act of 2007.
President, National Democratic Institute
Kenneth Wollack is president of NDI. He has been actively involved in foreign affairs, journalism and politics since 1972. Mr. Wollack joined NDI in 1986 as executive vice president. The Institute’s board of directors, then chaired by former Vice President Walter Mondale, elected him president in March 1993. Mr.Wollack has traveled extensively in Eastern and Central Europe, the former Soviet Union, Latin America, the Middle East, Asia and Africa on behalf of the Institute’s political development programs. Now chaired by former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, the Institute maintains offices in more than 60 countries and works to support democratic elections, political parties, parliaments, civic engagement and women’s political empowerment.
Before joining NDI, Mr. Wollack co-edited the Middle East Policy Survey, a Washington-based newsletter. He also wrote regularly on foreign affairs for the Los Angeles Times. From 1973 to 1980, he served as legislative director of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC). Mr. Wollack has been active in American politics, serving on the national staff of the McGovern presidential campaign in 1972. He graduated from Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana, and was a senior fellow at UCLA’s School for Public Affairs.
Mr. Wollack currently is a member of the Advisory Committee on Voluntary Foreign Aid and is the chairman of the board of directors for the U.S. Committee for the United Nations Development Programme. He has testified in numerous occasions before Congressional committees, appeared on national television and radio, and spoken before world affairs councils across the country. He has served on various Task Forces sponsored by the Brookings Institute, the US Institute for Peace, the council on Foreign Relations, and the Center for Global Engagement.
Current Advisory Board Members
Director of the Institute for Middle East Studies, George Washington University
Associate Professor of Government & Co-Director of the Democracy and Governance Studies, Georgetown University
Vice President of Studies, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Director of the Center for Democracy, Development, and Rule of Law at Stanford University
Chair, Board of Directors of AMIDEAST
Vice President, Council for a Community of Democracies