What we do

Many countries we work in are fragile democracies suffering from political instability, conflict and uncertainty, so flexibility is key to NIMD’s work. Being prepared to adapt swiftly to changing circumstances is crucial in the planning of all our programmes, and the safety and security of our colleagues and partners is our most important consideration.

This flexibility was called for in Myanmar, when in February 2021 the military deposed the elected government, stalling a gradual process of democratization that had begun a decade earlier.

NIMD has been active in Myanmar since 2014, running democracy education courses and dialogue sessions. This work was disrupted by the coup, but Myanmar continues to be a vital country in our network, and we are currently exploring new solutions to continue our work with Myanmar’s political and civic actors.

Democracy Education

Myanmar is home to more than 130 different ethnic groups, spread across a diverse geographical terrain where some groups have been engaged in prolonged conflict with the Myanmar military, and deep fault lines define the political landscape in Myanmar.

Breaking down this polarization and creating a more open and inclusive political space in Myanmar has been a key goal of NIMD. To work towards achieving this, we held intensive, month-long democracy education retreats at secluded locations as part of a joint programme with Demo Finland.

Attendees came from the across political and ethnic divides, and they studied together in a neutral, respectful, multiparty setting. Creating this shared experience helped participants overcome pre-conceptions about each other, laying the groundwork for greater co-operation and dialogue in the future.

Women’s Political Participation

Gender equality and women’s participation are central to NIMD’s Myanmar programme, and female politicians constituted a large proportion of the democracy education alumni.

All our programming in Myanmar aims to create a conducive environment for women’s full and meaningful inclusion in political and decision-making processes.

Building the skills and capacity of women in politics in Myanmar is crucial given their role in peace-building and bringing communities together in spaces of prolonged conflict.

Meet the Team

Htet Oo Wai
Myanmar Country Director
Htet Oo Wai is the Country Director for NIMD Myanmar.
Femke Lee
Programme & Knowledge Advisor
Femke Lee is the focal point in The Hague working with the Myanmar team. Femke has been with NIMD since 2019, and previously worked a Chief Technical Advisor for UNDP and a Senior Parliamentary Officer at the Natural Resource Governance Institute. With over 15 years of experience, Femke has strong expertise in the field of democratic governance, parliamentary capacity-building, political party development, and dialogue.

Who We Work With

NIMD's work in Myanmar is funded by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs under the LEAP4Peace and Power of Dialogue programmes. The LEAP4Peace consortium is made up of NIMD, the Burundi Leadership Training Program, the Gender Equality Network Myanmar, and Gender Action for Peace and Security, and supports women so they can play a meaningful role in political leadership, conflict resolution, and peace building.
Finland’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, through Demo Finland, also funds NIMD's Power of Dialogue work in Myanmar. The Power of Dialogue programme seeks to enhance collaboration of political and civic actors to participate in accountable political processes.


News 09-01-2023
Innovating Democracy Education: Myanmar’s MyDemocracy School app
Read more
News 21-10-2022
Women’s participation in promoting and maintaining peace in Colombia and Myanmar
Read more
News 24-08-2022
Myanmar: The Resilience of Democratic Values in a Conflict Setting
Read more
Stories 01-02-2022
Myanmar: Optimism and opportunities in the post-coup landscape
Read more
Stories 06-11-2020
Empowering women leaders at the Myanmar School of Politics
Read more
News 05-08-2020
VoteMatch workshops begin in Myanmar
Read more
Blog 04-06-2020
Testing the Water for Online Dialogue in Myanmar
Read more
News 16-12-2019
Mediation Training for Election Commissioners kicks off in Myanmar
Read more
News 04-12-2019
Myanmar School of Politics: Towards gender equality
Read more
News 19-11-2018
Myanmar: Building bridges among political parties to build a better future
Read more
News 13-08-2018
Congratulations to the Graduates of the 12th Myanmar School of Politics
Read more
News 09-04-2018
11th Myanmar School of Politics Core Course comes to an end
Read more
News 20-03-2018
Political training in Myanmar: 11th edition of the School of Politics
Read more
News 27-11-2017
Myanmar School of Politics Alumni Weekend
Read more
News 22-06-2017
Launch of 9th edition of MySoP political training in Myanmar
Read more
News 03-04-2017
Graduation day at the Myanmar School of Politics
Read more
News 16-12-2016
Myanmar School of Politics: Alumni event on ‘The Art of Political Speech’
Read more
News 18-07-2016
Myanmar School of Politics: Alumni weekend on ‘The Power of Political Dialogue’
Read more