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17: Democracies under pressure: The media and populism

Breakout / Future of the EU
english language

Does the media bear co-responsibility for the rise of populism in Europe? If so, why? Do media outlets display sufficiently the complexities of the contemporary world? Do they polarise and fuel radical discourses? Or do they, on the contrary, whitewash facts, thus disregarding justified public concerns? Discuss how to build up constructive media relations together with media practitioners and scientists.
Additional inputs on the topic are offered during the plenary on ‘Democracies under pressure’ and in the Breakout Session 7 ‘Civil society and populism’.


Director, Journalism and Media Programmes, Thomson Reuters Foundation, London
Editor, Republik AG, Zurich
Correspondent, DIE ZEIT, Berlin
Chairperson, New German Media Professionals, Cologne


Chairperson, New German Media Professionals, Cologne

 Sheila Mysorekar is the chairperson of the independent media organisation 'Neue deutsche Medienmacher' (New German Media Professionals), an organisation of ethnic minority journalists that campaigns for more diversity in German media. Sheila Mysorekar is Indo-German and lives in Cologne, Germany. She studied in Cologne and London and worked as a journalist in many countries, amongst others, in Jamaica, India, the US and Latin America, including eleven years in Argentina as independent correspondent for German media. Presently, she works for DW Akademie as trainer for conflict-sensitive journalism and consultant for media in post-conflict states, mostly in Libya and South Sudan.

Political Symposium

show timetable


13:30 - 16:30My Europe - My StoryPartner
17:00 - 18:30OpeningPlenary
19:00 - 20:30New perspectives on EU enlargementPlenary
21:30 - 23:30Drink receptionSocial


08:30 - 09:30DER STANDARD Morning BriefingPlenary
08:30 - 09:30POLITICO Morning BriefingPlenary
09:00 - 12:00Alpbach Hikes: Hiking with pioneers - Mindfulness in educationPartner
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 01: Whoever has the money has the power? The future financing of the EUBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 02: EU-Russia relations: Attempting a cool-headed analysisBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 03: Citizens don’t bite: Experiences and learnings from successful participation projects in EuropeBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 04: European security and the Mediterranean: A simulationBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 05: A world without nukes? The impact of the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear WeaponsBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 06: Women and youth empowerment: The Sustainable Development Goals in practiceBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 07: Democracies under pressure: Civil society and populismBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 08: Implementing the SDGs: The challenges countries face and the solutions they offerBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 09: European security in the age of hybrid threats: Rethinking military and civilian cooperation?Breakout
15:00 - 16:15Sovereignty in the EU: Who decides?Plenary
17:00 - 18:15Democracies under pressurePlenary
18:30 - 20:30Green Finance: Private capital against climate changePartner
18:45 - 20:15The subsidiarity principle under scrutinyPlenary
20:00 - 22:00European-Israeli DinnerSocial


08:30 - 09:30DER STANDARD Morning BriefingPlenary
08:30 - 09:30POLITICO Morning BriefingPlenary
09:00 - 12:00Alpbach Hikes: Hiking with pioneers - Mindfulness in politicsPartner
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 10: Living the Swiss militia principle: Ensuring resilience through involvementBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 11: Israel: Can democracy exist without peace?Breakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 12: Defending democracy in the digital age: From theory to practiceBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 13: The end of oil: Global systems in transitionBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 14: Are you acting or reacting? Countering climate change through new partnershipsBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 15: Culture and identity: What level of adaptation is required for successful integration?Breakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 16: Promoting sustainable developmentBreakout
10:00 - 12:30Breakout Session 17: Democracies under pressure: The media and populismBreakout
14:30 - 15:45Global power shifts: Implications for Europe and AsiaPlenary
16:15 - 17:45European Union - Russia: What to do?Plenary
18:15 - 19:15The future of the EU: Priorities of the Austrian EU Council PresidencyPlenary


09:00 - 12:00Alpbach Hikes: Hiking with pioneers - Mindfulness in businessPartner
09:30 - 10:30The rule of law under scrutinyPlenary
11:00 - 12:30Reconciling (bio)diversity protection and efforts to mitigate climate changePlenary