MYANMAR SCHOOL OF POLITICS ADVANCES DEMOCRACY & DIALOGUE

  • Myanmar School of Politics (MySoP) is the first cross-party training program In Myanmar at the local level
  • MySoP courses focus on the political theory and practice as well cross-party co-operation. Since late 2014, 136 politicians representing 28 political parties have been trained at four-week courses in democratic knowledge and practice.

Demo Finland and the Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy (NIMD)  launched the Myanmar School of Politics (MySoP) in 2014 to support the democratic transformation of Myanmar. MySoP focuses on strengthening the democratic functioning of political parties and enhancing a practice of multi-party dialogue at the regional and state level.

The intensive courses focus on political theory and multiparty co-operation as well as on the practices of policy-making such as speechwriting, political dialogue, debate, and campaigning. Each edition features a country comparison on democratization in another South/Southeast Asian nation. By gaining both knowledge and practical experience of working in a multiparty setting, participating politicians can influence political decision-making in a more effective and constructive manner. In addition, MySoP aslo organizes trainings for alumni enabling them to deepen their knowledge and especially strengthen cross-party co-operation.

Third form of activity are permanent multiparty dialogue platforms at the state level, enabling parties to do substantial co-operation and take political initiatives on themes that are significant for their state.

MySoP activities are always attended by politicians from all the political parties of each state. The way the sessions are organized stimulates political dialogue amongst the different political parties not only during MySoP but also thereafter. By sharing their knowledge and experience from the MySoP with fellow party members, participants will help to increase the impact of the program especially on the part of strategic planning of the parties and developing the party programs.

Since the dissolution of the junta of 20 years in 2011, Myanmar has gradually been returning to civilian rule, cumulating in historic nationwide elections held on November 8th 2015 and the subsequent installation of new parliaments in spring 2016.

Despite the reforms, the open conflict between some of the country’s numerous ethnic groups continues in certain regions of the country. Open, accountable and inclusive democracy will be essential to reduce tension and steer Myanmar towards stability and pluralist, equal and democratic development. MySoP courses have so far been organized for politicians of Shan State, Kayin State, Mon State and Tanintharyi Region.

MySoP builds on previous experience of Demo Finland and NIMD and of similar programs in other countries going through democratization.

  • Funding: Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland contribution 159 000 € (2017)
  • Partners: NIMD