Research centers and their importance for democracies
Dr. Manuel Alcántara Sáez, Director of FLACSO-Spain, held on Tuesday, January 30, the conference "Research centers and their importance for democracies", at the City of Knowledge Convention Center.
Professor Jorge Arosemena, Executive President of the City of Knowledge Foundation, was in charge of welcoming all people present. He stressed that one of the main ideas of the founders of the City of Knowledge was to open permanent spaces for dialogue to share ideas and thoughts on the most important issues of the 21st century.
Manuel Alcántara reflected on his contemporary thoughts on democracy and how it has grown in number over the past 30 years. He mentioned that globalization is articulated on the new information and communication technologies that provide the very idea of universalization, immediacy and virality. Alcántara spoke about the fact that we live in times of anger that question democracy and its importance. "Today there is a trivialization of democracy that is linked to the fact that it has been reduced to the holding of elections, to an absence of the balance of powers and to a liquidation of the political party systems," said Alcántara.
"The new channels of communication have had a great impact on people's emotions and this leads to democracy moving through a minefield. Public opinion has been replaced by public emotion. That is why research and thought centers take on great importance in order to unite thought and research and thus obtain some kind of response to the problems that society faces," said Alcántara.
The event also included a discussion panel composed by Juan Diego Alvarado, President of the Center for Democratic Initiatives (CIDEM), Dr. Luis Herrera, Researcher of the USMA and Member of the National Research System (SNI), and Olga de Obaldía, Executive Director of the Foundation for the Development of Citizen Liberty - Panamanian Chapter of International Transparency.