Authoritarianism’s Last Line of Defense

Article
January 2010

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.

Books in Review: Democratic Triumph, Scholarly Pessimism

Article
January 2010

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?

Twenty Years of Postcommunism: What's the Matter With Russia?

Article
January 2010

The author analyses the confluence of several elements that helped to set Russia’s course: the influence of history; the challenges of the transformation process itself; the importance of leadership; and the role of the West.

Twenty Years of Postcommunism: Citizenship Restored

Article
January 2010

The 1989 revolutions in Central and Eastern Europe were the triumph of civic dignity over Leninism. The first decade of postcommunism saw the project of an open society strongly challenged by ethnocratic temptations. The most important new idea brought about by the revolutions of 1989 was the rethinking and the restoration of citizenship.

Jordan: Ten More Years of Autocracy

Article
October 2009

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.

Angola's Façade Democracy

Article
October 2009

Parliamentary elections in 2008 secured the MPLA's hegemony and decimated the opposition, while paradoxically increasing the government's legitimacy.

Tanzania's Missing Opposition

Article
October 2009

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.

A New Approach to Postwar Reconstruction

Article
October 2009

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.

Poverty, Inequality, and Democracy (II): East-Central Europe’s Quandary

Article
October 2009

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.

Democratization by Elections? A Mixed Record

Article
July 2009

Evidence suggests that under some circumstances repeated elections, even if flawed, can lead to democratization.

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