Activity Report

The Swiss Democracy Foundation in its eighth year of activity:



Swiss Democracy Foundation


The Swiss Democracy Foundation looks back on an eventful 2023, marked by profound global changes. Pressure from authoritarian forces on democracies has increased worldwide. Complex political and social crises pose new challenges to democratic processes. Strengthening and developing democracy has taken on a new importance and urgency. In many places, people and organisations are working to protect democratic values and rights. The global context highlights the importance of the work and contribution of the Swiss Democracy Foundation as a Swiss anchor for the promotion of democracy worldwide.

In this context, the Global Forum on Modern Direct Democracy took place in the spring of 2023 - for the first time since 2012 on the American continent, in Mexico City. Several hundred international experts discussed current challenges to democracy and ways to strengthen it. Another highlight of the past year was the first Swiss-Ukrainian Media Forum in June. Representatives of the Ukrainian and Swiss media, the diplomatic community and civil society organisations discussed the role of independent media in democracy, especially in times of war. The discussions continued at the 2023 International Day of Democracy Conference, organised for the first time in September by the Swiss Democracy Foundation together with the Polit-Forum Bern and other partner organisations. The focus was on strategies and best-practice projects to combat the global threats to democracies posed by autocratic forces.

With the Youth + Democracy fund, the Swiss Democracy Foundation continues to support young initiatives that are committed to promoting democratic values, democracy education and the participation of young people in democratic processes. The Foundation considers the strengthening of democracy education and the political participation of young people and young adults to be an important and forward-looking contribution to the promotion of democracy. Through the Fund, the Swiss Democracy Foundation provides targeted support to projects and organisations that are largely supported by people under the age of 30. This support is not only provided financially, but also through integration into the Foundation's broad national and international network.

In 2023, the Swiss Democracy Foundation continued to actively promote democracy education and youth participation in Switzerland. This included participation in working groups, such as the working group "Political Education" of the Federal Social Insurance Office (BSV), as well as regular dialogue with authorities at all federal levels. This cooperation has always focused on the goal of optimising the framework conditions for democratic education and the participation of young people in democratic processes.

In the past year, the Swiss Democracy Foundation also devoted a great deal of attention to continuing and developing its long-standing cooperation with partner organisations from all over the world. This includes close cooperation with Democracy International (DE) and regular exchanges with Swiss diplomatic missions in various countries. The Swiss Democracy Foundation is also in constant contact with other partner organisations such as Ollin (MX), Europuls (RO), the Ukrainian Parliamentary Institute, the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy, the Korean Democracy Foundation and many others. The further development of the "Direct Democracy Navigator" research project, co-founded by the Swiss Democracy Foundation in collaboration with Democracy International, the Liechtenstein Institute, the Erasmus University Rotterdam and the University of Lille, is another example of a long-standing collaboration to strengthen direct democracy worldwide. Together with our partner organisations, we promote the global exchange of democracy-related best practices and advocate for the cross-border protection and development of democratic principles.

In addition to its international and national projects and activities, the Swiss Democracy Foundation 2023 also focused on internal organisational development: the new Office in Berne, which opened in 2022, and the internal structures were meaningfully expanded. With Stefanie Bosshard moving from the Board to the position of Managing Director of the Office, the Board published a call for applications to expand the Board. With Nancy Eckert, the Swiss Democracy Foundation has gained a qualified new member of the Board. In addition, a new internship position to support the Managing Director was created and successfully staffed with Jérémy Schmid.


Figures and impact 2023

 SDF-Newsletter Subscribers  1'036
Symbol Vernetzung.jpg  Connected people at SDF events  > 1'000
 Young people reached directly by the Y+D Fund  2'600
 Funding contributions granted by the Y+D Fund in CHF  32'000
 Employees at the Office  2
 Members of the Board



The 2023 activity report provides an overview of the highlights of the foundation's year and the organisations and projects supported by the Youth + Democracy Fund, as well as information on how the Swiss Democracy Foundation is financed and how you can support the foundation financially.


Adrian Schmid, President of the Board

Stefanie Bosshard, Managing Director

Latest report

SDF Activity Report 2023 (in german)



SDF Activity Report 2022 (in german)

SDF Activity Report 2021 (in german)

SDF Activity Report 2020 (in german)