Evidence from the postcommunist countries shows that the strength of the legislature may be the institutional key to democratic consolidation.
Volume 17, Issue 1
Getting to Arab Democracy
Taking advantage of the withdrawal of Syrian troops, Lebanese voters capped the "Beirut Spring" by electing a new majority in parliament.
There is a widespread desire for democracy among the Iraqi public, but when it comes to the roles of religion, ethnicity, and gender equality in Iraq's new democracy, attitudes are more varied.
Whether ethnic, sectarian, or some combination of the two, communalsim is one of the massive realities of Middle Eastern life and politics. It is usually seen as an obstacle to democracy, but need that always be the case?
Strategies based on transition pacts that reduce rulers' risks and cushion their retreat from total power may be the most promising route to democracy in the Arab world.
The successful completion of yet another general election should dispel any residual doubts about Bulgarian democracy. But the election results made clear that the country now faces a new set of challenges.
Independent central banks throughout the former Soviet Union suffer from a dual democratic deficit. How can they gain greater democratic legitimacy without compromising their countries' economic health?
Vladimir Putin has pulled the plug on democracy in Russia in an effort to strengthen the authority of the central state. But a look at Russian federal relations shows that the state is growing weaker rather than stronger.
The gains for freedom in the Middle East were the most significant seen since the Freedom House survey began in 1972.
After a long and bloody civil conflict, Burundi has established a new democratic regime. Does its tenuous but hopeful example hold lessons that might help its troubled neighbors?
Burundi's leaders are learning to embrace a culture of discussion and consensus that offers a way out of the abyss of civil war.
Data from Africa show that repeated elections, regardless of their relative freeness or fairness,appear to have a positive impact on the growth of civil liberties and democratic values.
Measurements that rely on perceptions of corruption can be misleading. What is needed is a method of gauging how well a country has set itself up to defend public integrity systematically and in all its dimensions.
A review of The Universal Hunger for Liberty: Why the Clash of Civilizations Is Not Inevitable. By Michael Novak.
A review of Pakistan: Between Mosque and Military, by Hussain Haqqani.
Reports on elections in Afghanistan, Argentina, Azerbaijan, Bolivia, Burkina Faso, Chile, Egypt, Gabon, Haiti, Honduras, Kazakhstan, Liberia, Poland, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, and Venezuela.
Excerpts from: the Damascus Declaration for Democratic National Change; the preamble of the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation; the Taipei Declaration on Democracy in Asia.