A coauthor of the pathbreaking study Transitions from Authoritarian Rule reflects on the lessons that he has learned about democratic transition and consolidation since the publication of this work nearly 25 years ago.
The new electoral authoritarian regimes of the post–Cold War era have formally adopted the full panoply of liberal-democratic institutions. Rather than rejecting or repressing these institutions, they manipulate them.
By any measure, democratization has achieved remarkable advances over the past twenty years. Why, then, have so many of the leading works written on the topic during this period been so full of gloom?
Jordan gets much good press for having one of the more open and liberal regimes in the Arab world, but that reputation masks a considerably grimmer reality.
Parliamentary elections in 2008 secured the MPLA's hegemony and decimated the opposition, while paradoxically increasing the government's legitimacy.
The country's long-ruling party has never faced a serious electoral challenge—due not only to opposition weakness but also to a deliberate strategy of suppression.
As countries emerge from war and embark on recovery, the risk of corruption is high and the consequences are dire. International aid must be accompanied by an anticorruption strategy that incorporates community-driven accountability.
The countries of Central and Eastern Europe have been struggling to devise approaches to political economy that can bring stability, prosperity, and a measure of equality in a world dominated by global finance and exchange.
Legislative elections in the Middle East often become contests over patronage and wind up reinforcing authoritarian regimes.
Due to weak opposition parties and presidential dominance, many African countries have not reaped the full benefits of regularly held elections.