The Modernization Trap

Issue Date April 2017
Volume 28
Issue 2
Page Numbers 77-91
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In both developed and developing states, challenges to the liberal order are converging on a single main competitor, populist nationalism, which is a response to the tension between two central elements of liberal modernity: free markets and mass participation in politics. Whereas in late developers this contradiction is caused by the mismatch between market economics and clientelist political institutions, in consolidated democracies it is caused by economic deregulation and international capital and labor mobility that disconnect markets from democratic control. The remedy in both cases is to embed markets more firmly in liberal, democratically accountable institutions.