Transitions Forum (Archive)

Examining the challenges and opportunities of radical political and economic change

The Transitions Forum encompasses a series of projects dedicated to the study of radical political and economic change through case studies, lectures and workshops, offering lessons learned for current and future transitions across the globe. It is a platform to promote creative, innovative ideas advancing prosperity at a time when a country is most ripe for such change.

As part of its work on transitions, the Legatum Institute co-publishes the Democracy Lab, a journalistic joint-venture with Foreign Policy magazine dedicated to reporting on political and economic challenges faced by countries that are striving to make the transition from authoritarianism to democracy.

[Video Playlist]

Case Studies

Country Case Studies examine particular reform challenges within specific countries through a series of papers, conferences and workshops. The project aims to cross-fertilise and encourage exchange between experts in countries and regions with relevant experience and people in transitioning countries.   

Beyond Propaganda

The 21st century is seeing a new scale of media manipulation, psychological war and disinformation. The technological capacity of the information age, a more liquid use of ideology by authoritarian regimes, and the West’s own difficulties in projecting democratic values have redefined the threat of propaganda. ‘Beyond Propaganda’ investigates these challenges and aims to identify solutions.

Curbing Corruption: Ideas That Work

Corruption has become a major problem in political transitions around the world. This series of case studies, produced in cooperation with Democracy Lab, looks at specific mechanisms that have proven successful in fighting corruption, and which can offer practical lessons to reformers.


Iran Series

The Iran series examines the dynamics of political, social and economic issues in Iran today. Throughout 2016 a diverse group of experts and Iran followers will share their knowledge and exchange ideas at the Legatum Institute. The series will explore a range of contemporary questions—from the role of women in politics and rising minority voices to business and economic prospects and the influences of art and culture.


Democracy Lab

Democracy Lab is an online partnership between the Legatum Institute and Foreign Policy magazine, dedicated to covering political and economic transitions around the world. It is edited by Legatum Institute Senior Fellow and veteran foreign correspondent Christian Caryl and features a roster of leading writers and thinkers.

All-Party Parliamentary Group on Foreign Affairs

The Legatum Institute is delighted to act as Honorary Secretariat to the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Foreign Affairs, co-chaired by Mr Khalid Mahmood and Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne. The purpose of the APPG is to examine issues of UK foreign policy and the likely challenges of achieving prosperity, security and prevention of conflict.

Past Projects


Democracy Works

Democracy Works is a project that explores the relationship between democracy and growth with a case study of three countries: India, South Africa and Brazil. It is a joint-initiative between the Legatum Institute, the Centre for Development and Enterprise in Johannesburg, Centre for Policy Research in New Delhi, and Instituto de Estudos do Trabalho e Sociedade in Rio de Janeiro.

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The Future of Iran

The Future of Iran is a project designed to encourage Iranians to begin thinking about the challenges they will face if, or when, they suddenly find themselves in a position to carry out major political, social and economic reforms. The programme is led by Anne Applebaum, Director of the Transitions Forum, together with Programme Advisor Sharan Tabari.