Forum Focus: October 2022

Monthly news from the National Endowment for Democracy‘s International Forum for Democratic Studies on issues related to democracy around the world.


The International Forum launched the “Countering Kleptocracy” newsletter, which examines how transnational kleptocracy serves as a vehicle for theft, repression, and influence for political elites—and how democracies might be able to respond. Update your preferences to receive “Countering Kleptocracy” in your inbox.

  • In the first edition, Melissa Aten, senior program officer for the International Forum, offered insights into how transnational kleptocracy undermines democracy and the rule of law both at home and abroad in a recent Power 3.0 blog post.
  • On October 13, the International Forum will host a public event on “Sustaining the Momentum: Countering Kleptocracy in Russia and Beyond” to discuss how democracies can build upon the momentum against kleptocracy and craft comprehensive strategies to address this critical global challenge.


Beijing has long sought to influence and co-opt international organizations and institutions to control narratives about its policies and project pro-government coverage. Amid the PRC’s ongoing repression in Xinjiang, the International Forum asked six leading experts: How has Beijing Sought to Suppress and Influence Responses from the International Community to its Continued Repression of Uyghurs in China and Abroad?
  • Nury TurkelAlexander DukalskisXiao QiangNate Schenkkan, Greg Walton, and Maya Wang discussed the ways in which the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) utilizes ongoing campaigns and discourse control to wield leverage over international narratives regarding its human rights abuses.
  • This publication is drawn from an International Forum public event with the Hudson Institute’s Nury Turkel centered around his book on China’s ongoing transnational repression and discourse control against the Uyghur community and others who hold China accountable for its abuses.


Last month, the International Forum revived the Power 3.0 podcast for monthly episodes to address several of the most pressing challenges to democracy and deepen our understanding of the modern authoritarian playbook.
  • In the introductory episode, International Forum Senior Director John K. Glenn outlined how the podcast will bring together leaders on the frontlines of the fight to defend democracy and also explore how new methods of authoritarian influence are reshaping the contest over democratic values.
  • As the first featured guest, the University of Cambridge’s Jason Sharman joined John K. Glenn and Melissa Aten for a conversation on the transnational impact of kleptocracy, and what comes next following the unified democratic response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.


In October, we are highlighting our work related to advocating for human rights around the world: 

The International Forum also released the following external publications: 

Additional items: