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An equal say and an equal chance for all: that is the motto of Dēmos, a public policy organization in the USA. Dēmos represents the interests of citizens and is committed to protecting their democratic rights. Dēmos is working towards a society where all have an equal say in democracy and an equal chance in the economy. To help the USA meet that challenge, Dēmos deploys research, advocacy, litigation and strategic communications with the goal of reducing political, economic and racial inequality.


Dēmos defends ideas that have been excluded from the debate, on behalf of people who have been excluded from the conversation. The word Dēmos means ‘the people’ and it is the root word for democracy, which should be the voice of all people.


Demos focuses on three essential goals:

  • Achieving true democracy by reducing the role of money in politics and guaranteeing the freedom to vote.
  • Working towards a sustainable economy based on equality and the protection of common good.
  • Promoting solidarity and mutual understanding between different people and communities.


Dēmos strongly opposes against political abuses. For example: during the presidential elections of 2012 Dēmos published the report "A stacked deck" that revealed a bleak picture of the U.S. political system as increasingly dominated by wealthy interests. The publication ‘A stacked deck’ was followed by ‘a Billion-Dollar Democracy’ published in January 2013, a comprehensive analysis of the role of money in the 2012 elections. The presidential election cost over $6 billion in private money and turned out a mere 60 percent of all eligible voters. According to Dēmos high donor involvement and low citizen participation is a recipe for unequal voice in policy making and it erodes America’s promise of an equal say and an equal chance for all. Simply put, the goal for America’s democracy is big money out, people in.


Dēmos is changing the conversation around democracy and economy by being a constant and increasingly influential voice in the media. Their team is speaking up for economically and politically disempowered citizens in forums where they are too often forgotten. In 2013 Dēmos’ staff and experts appeared on television an average of three times a week and their research is used as a critical resource for web and print journalists.


Dēmos advocates in the courts and for policies at every level in order to ensure that the dēmos in our democracy can speak up, be heard, and exert real influence on the decisions that affect the lives of all. By enforcing laws such as ‘the National Voter Registration Act’ Dēmos helped millions of individuals exercise their freedom to vote. Due to the efforts of Dēmos, nearly two million low-income Americans have applied to register to vote at state agencies.


Dēmos also demands a new economic order built for shared prosperity: “The world is facing the consequences of an economy over reliant on speculation and extraction. We live in a world where capitalism prevails and prescribes the rules to democracy. It’s time for change and not companies but the people themselves should decide how to shape society.”


For that reason Dēmos advocates financial regulation to promote a vision of Wall Street as a pipeline for productive investment in the real economy, not a casino where insiders win by extracting wealth from the rest of the people.


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Type of initiative Knowledge/advice organization, Action/campaign organization
Field of work Politics
Date of commencement 2000
Legal form 501c3 non-profit organization
Continent North America
Country USA
City New York
One or several keywords that describe your initiative democracy, equality, new economy
Publications Reports, books, policy briefs, litigation, testimony, videos, newsletter
More information

Contact person(s)

Elektra Gray


Contact information

Name Dēmos
Address 220 Fifth Ave, 2nd Floor
Zip/postal code NY 10001
Place New York
State/province New York
Country USA
Phone +1 212.633.1405



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