New Edition of The Research Monitor (fyi 15): Right-Wing Movements and Their Threat to Democracy

The Research Monitor (fyi 15) published on the 4th of June a new edition which compiles seven studies and an interview with Dr. Annett Heft. The publication entails the current state of research on right-wing movements, highlighting why they pose a serious threat to democracy and suggesting which efforts can be made to counteract them.

In her interview, Annett Heft discusses the significant challenges that anti-democratic movements present to modern democracies and social cohesion. These movements reject essential democratic principles such as equality, political diversity, and minority protection. Moreover, she points out that the rise of such movements, evidenced by incidents like the NSU terror and Christchurch attacks, indicates not just a fringe phenomena, but a serious global issue.

In this, digital platforms play a critical role in amplifying these movements, undermining traditional media, and enabling the widespread dissemination of extremist ideologies. Common strategies employed by these movements include building cross-platform information ecosystems, adopting practices that lend legitimacy, and exploiting current crises like migration and the pandemic.

Annett Heft emphasizes the importance of strict enforcement of existing digital laws, strengthening democratic resilience, and improving digital media literacy. Additionally, individuals can also help counter these movements, by critically evaluating digital content and fostering civility in everyday interactions.

For more information, visit The Media Authority of North Rhine-Westphalia website. The PDF version of the publication is also available for download here.