International Conference on Consolidating the Third Wave Democracies – Trends and Challenges

     The “International Conference on Consolidating the Third Wave Democracies”, co-sponsored by INPR and the National Endowments for Democracy’s International Forum for Democratic Studies of the United States, was a successful event, which received worldwide attention. The four-day event was held in Regent Taipei from August 27 to 30,1995 and attracted more than 60 highly representative political leaders, academic elites specializing in democratic development , leadership of famous international think tanks, and media chiefs from 28 countries and regions around the world. President Lee, Teng-hui delivered a keynote speech with the title “Establishing a New Medium Route: The Creative Transition of Classic Democratic Tradition” in the opening ceremony. Aside from co-sponsor NED President Carl Gershman, participants include politicians such as Former Prime Minister Yegor Gaida of Russia, Former Prime Minister Mart Laar of Estonia, and Former Minister Jose Maravall of Spain; academic elites such as Professor Samuel Huntington, Professor Larry Diamond, Professor Juan Linz, Professor Robert Scalapino, Professor Andrew Nathan, Professor Francis Fukuyama, and Professor Moon Chung-in; think tank leaders President Wilmot James of South African Democratic Research Center and Prosident Alesander Smolar of Polish Stefan Batory Foundation; and the renowned Journalist Juan Arias from Panama. 
     The Conference brought Taiwan with international focus not only for its attraction of prestigious figures, but also for its role-playing on Taiwan’s democratic development. President Lee and other high-ranking officials of Taiwan pledged staunch position on democracy in their speeches, which was beneficial for the smooth legislator election and direct presidential election in the following months. With the establishment of first ever Chinese people elected government, Taiwan accomplished democratic transition, overriding the stereo type of incompatibility of democracy and Chinese culture. It was truly a remarkable achievement for Taiwan’s political development after Taiwan economic miracle.  


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