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"Foreign Agents" Legislation: Between Democratic Resilience and Weaponized Transparency

Date & Time

Apr. 17, 2024
2:00pm – 3:00pm ET


6th Floor, Woodrow Wilson Center
and Online


The ongoing authoritarian backsliding in countries around the world in recent decades has forced democracies to seek new tools to respond to illiberal challenges. One such tool is the legislation on so-called foreign agents and its analogues. While this legislation is designed to make hidden foreign influence more transparent, it can have a negative impact on democratic order and lead to its erosion. 

Using the Russian example, Galina Starovoitova Fellow Maxim Krupskiy will discuss how non-democratic regimes have effectively used foreign agents legislation and its weaknesses as a tool of repression against dissenters and civil society. This presentation will demonstrate the risks that this legislation entails, as well as possible approaches to its improvement from the perspective of the resilient democracy concept.

Hosted By

Kennan Institute

The Kennan Institute is the premier US center for advanced research on Eurasia and the oldest and largest regional program at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. The Kennan Institute is committed to improving American understanding of Russia, Ukraine, Central Asia, the South Caucasus, and the surrounding region though research and exchange.  Read more

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