What is the Observatory of Quality of Democracy (OQD)?

The Observatory of Quality of Democracy (OQD) is a permanent research program of the Institute of Social Sciences that develops projects focused on the diverse characteristics, functioning and quality of democratic regimes.

Research Topics

The OQD conducts and fosters studies in several research topics including:

The Quality of democracy

The OQD conducts studies that seek to evaluate and diagnose the quality of democracy in Portugal. Given that democracy is a multidimensional reality, some questions that the OQD seeks to answer are: what do the Portuguese people expect from democracy? How do they evaluate its multiple dimensions?

Attitudes and behaviors of citizens related to the democratic transition

This research topic aggregates studies that seek to understand how the past influences political attitudes and behavior in Portugal: does the memory of democratization impact the way citizens view politics today? What legacy has the process of democratic transition left to present-day Portugal?

Youth and Politics

The goal of this topic is to portray Portuguese youth’s regarding political attitudes and behaviour.


The Observatory has published several studies and seeks to contribute to the production of knowledge on democracy in Portugal.

Portuguese Democratisation 40 years on: Its Meaning and Enduring Legacies

(Marina Costa Lobo, Antônio Costa Pinto & Pedro C. Magalhães)
South European Society and Politics, 2016

In this article, some of the main findings concerning the meanings and legacies of 25 April 1974 are presented, drawing on the findings of two surveys focusing on Portuguese attitudes towards 25 April and fielded in 2004 and 2014, respectively, to a representative sample of the Portuguese population.

Employment, Mobility, Politics and Leisure: Situations and Attitudes of Portuguese Youth in a Comparative Perspective

(Marina Costa Lobo, Vítor Sérgio Ferreira & Jussara Rowland)
Institute of Social Sciences, University of Lisbon, 2015

Young people constitute a social group that deserves further study, especially in the face of the economic crisis experienced by Portuguese society. The objective is to understand the social and political attitudes of Portuguese youth – in comparison to the rest of Portuguese society – when approaching subjects such as employment and employability, mobility, politics and leisure.

Policy Brief The Quality of Democracy in Portugal

(Marina Costa Lobo)
Institute of Social Sciences, University of Lisbon, 2014

In this report, it was made a brief picture of the quality of democracy in Portugal. We conclude that democracy in Portugal today faces a set of significant challenges.