Countries taking the initial steps from dictatorship toward electoral politics are especially prone to civil and international war. Yet states endowed with coherent institutions—such as a functioning bureaucracy and the elements needed to construct a sound legal system—have often been able to democratize peacefully and successfully. Consequently, whenever possible, efforts to promote democracy should try…
Volume 18, Issue 3
In certain circumstances, both liberalism and popular rule can obstruct rather than promote state-building.
The history of many of today’s established democracies shows that “out-of-sequence” democratization can lead to eventual success.
Unlike pessimistic scholars and recalcitrant autocrats, most ordinary citizens are inclined to take the risks of choosing democracy when they can.
For more than two decades, President Yoweri Museveni has been building an authoritarian regime that answers closely to his personal will.
Rising levels of wealth and schooling make it highly likely that China will be a "Partly Free" country by 2015 and a "Free" one ten years after that.
No one should underrate the will and skill that the ruling Chinese Communist Party will put into keeping its grip on power.
China is gradually changing. In the coming years, the pursuit of individual dignity and human rights will increasingly come to the fore.
The Democracy Barometers (Part I)
The Editors’ introduction to the first of two clusters on “The Democracy Barometers.”
East Asia’s “third-wave” democracies are in distress, and the economic success of nondemocratic regimes in the region creates a tough standard for comparison.
By world standards, Latin Americans ideologically are slightly to the right. But their attitudes are moving leftward, a trend with potential implications for democratic stability in the region.
Survey data indicate that Africans support democracy and its formal institutions, but also point to the importance of the informal realm, particularly when formal institutions fail to meet popular expectations.
After a decade and a half, how do citizens of postcommunist Europe now feel toward their new governing regimes?
Sub-Saharan Africa has been traditionally depicted as a place where formal institutional rules are largely irrelevant-yet in the past fifteen years these rules have come to matter, and this trend is unlikely to reverse.
Since the early 1990s, many African countries have undergone political liberalization, and so far this trend has been accompanied by a significant drop in the incidence of military coups.
Democracy is facing hard times in the region, but the shape of the problems varies according to the differing informal legacies of communism in individual countries.
A review of A World Beyond Politics? A Defense of the Nation-State by Pierre Manent.
Reports on elections in Algeria, Armenia, Bahamas, Benin, Burkina Faso, Estonia, Mali, Mauritania, Nigeria, and Timor-Leste.
Excerpts from: the Berlin Declaration; an interview with Thich Quang Do—winner of the 2006 Thorolf Rafto Memorial Prize for Human Rights Defenders; a speech delivered by Romanian president Traian Băsescu.