Work package nine concludes the whole project by bringing together the leaders of all academic work packages in order to formulate the lessons learned from the project in terms of the preconditions, expressions and, most importantly, the responses to the challenge that post-truth politics constitutes for liberal democracy in Europe (and elsewhere). Paralleling the work of WP1 (which is active predominantly in the first six months of the project), this WP focuses its activities on the last twelve months of the project and thus coincides with the critical-advisory phase of the project. The main objective is to draw conclusions as to the functioning of European liberal democracies in the post-factual age.
While certain key tenets of liberal democracies appear to remain resilient against internal and external challenges in some member states, they seem to be prone to autocratisation in other member states. By bringing together the analyses of work packages 2-8, this WP develops policy recommendations on how to make liberal democracies resilient against such internal and external challenges. Special emphasis is placed on evaluating, in a comparative perspective, how post-truth politics affects the institutions of liberal democracies, notably including the separation of powers, the rule of law, media freedom, independent civil society and the guarantee of human and citizens’ rights enshrined in constitutions and European Primary law as well as informal institutions of constitutional traditions. To this end the WP will provide theoretically rigorous and normatively informed reflections on how political liberalism can be actualised in order to take on the discourses that challenge the functioning of liberal democracies in Europe.
Furthermore, the WP will determine which obstacles are most prominent to overcome in order to reinstate the legitimacy and effectiveness of liberal democracies. It will identify gaps in existing policy frameworks and develop policy recommendations which will have an impact on and contribute to the EU's policies on countering the threats that liberal democracies face in the 21st century.