Democracy Monitoring

Research question/goal: 

Democracy monitoring aims to collect and to analyse empirical data in order to assess systematically the functioning of democracy and to identify possibilities for improvements. It is based on a detailed description of democratic attitudes and participatory orientations of citizens, as well as their assessments of the functioning of democracy. For that purpose usually two complementary instruments are used: representative surveys among the population (aged 15 and older) and focus group discussions on specific themes (understanding of democracy, expectations on municipal politics, performance assessments, etc.). The main goals of the project are (1) collecting data for a systematic evaluation of the functioning of democracy, (2) developing explanations for differences, and (3) analysing the quality of democracy based regional, national and international comparison, as well as European comparisons (using data from the most recent wave of the ESS). The project includes the Democracy Audit Mannheim (DAMA) and the Citizen and Democracy in Baden-Württemberg (BDBaWü).

Current stage: 

Results from the second wave of the study “Citizen and democracy in Baden-Württemberg” were made available in a collaborative volume, “Demokratie-Monitoring Baden-Württemberg 2016/2017”, published with Springer VS (2019). This project’s data also form the basis for a comprehensive paper on the relevance of different understandings of democracy for participation and democratic attitudes, which has been submitted to an international journal. A new instrument for measuring ‘norms of citizenship’ was developed and pretested in collaboration with researchers from GESIS and the University of Bremen.

Fact sheet

City of Mannheim; Baden-Württemberg Stiftung
2012 to 2020
Data Sources: 
Representative surveys (CATI), focus groups
Geographic Space: 
City of Mannheim; State of Baden-Württemberg



van Deth, Jan W. (Ed.) (2014): Demokratie in der Großstadt: Ergebnisse des ersten Mannheimer Demokratie Audit. Wiesbaden: Springer VS. more