This application concerns an ÅA Center of Excellence that has been in operation since January 1, 2006: “Democracy: A Citizen Perspective” (D:CE). The research conducted by D:CE scholars deals with the state of contemporary Western democracy and with the promises and pitfalls of developing democratic governance in a more participatory direction. Along with the present application, an updated version of our 2008 mid-term report is submitted. That report accounts for the work done until today. Moreover, for a detailed description of D:CE objectives, methods, organization, operations and external collaboration, the original research plan may be consulted. This application therefore contents itself with brief summaries on these points. Priority is given to our plans for the years ahead; the prospects of developing, expanding and refining our work further will be at the center of attention.