As the battle over the Supreme Court nomination begins in the United States, and as protestors take to the streets in Poland against the ruling Law and Justice Party’s (PiS) move to dismantle the country’s independent judiciary, The New School’s Transregional Center for Democratic Studies (TCDS) launches its 27th annual Democracy & Diversity Institute in Wrocław, Poland

“The Democratic project everywhere is in an extremely precarious state,” said Elzbieta Matynia, who directs TCDS. “It is in response to this new, disturbing, and often unpredictable political environment, the theme of this summer’s Institute is  Shifting Ground: The Politics of Fiction & Reality Today.”

Working within The New School’s emblematic tradition of scholarly excellence, civic engagement, and an ethical commitment to the larger world ,the institute is led by distinguished members of The New School’s faculty, including Matynia (Sociology), James Dodd (Philosophy), Claire Potter (History), and, the eminent philosopher Agnes Heller (Professor Emerita in Philosophy at NSSR). Together with 30 advanced students from 13 countries they will explore social factors and political forces that have facilitated the emergence of a strikingly widening phenomenon: a transition FROM democracy.

The Democracy & Diversity Institute, organized annually by TCDS is a widely admired and intimate international forum for lively but rigorous debate on critical issues of democratic life, offering an interdisciplinary, comparative, and highly interactive approach to the social, political, and cultural challenges facing today’s world.  For more information please visit the TCDS website at or email TCDS at