The End of the Transitions Era?

Regime change will always be a feature of political life, but we are unlikely to see again transitions to democracy on the scale of the “third wave.”


The Maidan and Beyond: The House That Yanukovych Built

The events surrounding the EuroMaidan cannot be understood apart from the preceding five years of increasingly corrupt and authoritarian rule.


The Maidan and Beyond: Civil Society and Democratization

Despite the spirit of participation that characterized the Maidan, organized civil society groups were not a key factor.


The Maidan and Beyond: Who Were the Protesters?

Survey data reveal the makeup of the crowds in the Maidan and the factors that motivated them to take part in the protests.


The Maidan and Beyond: The Media's Role

Media, both new and traditional and both Russian and Ukrainian, played a major role in the EuroMaidan story from the very outset.


The Maidan and Beyond: Ukraine's Radical Right

Russian propagandists—echoed by some Western commentators—portray Ukraine as a hotbed of nationalist extremism. The truth is quite different.


The Maidan and Beyond: Oligarchs, Corruption, and European Integration

Controlling corruption is a huge challenge for Ukraine, especially in the natural-gas industry. The steps needed are well understood, if only the political will to take them can be summoned.

PDF icon Oligarchs, Corruption, and European Integration

The Maidan and Beyond: The Russia Factor

The regime of Vladimir Putin has been a key driver of the crisis in Ukraine. Under challenge at home for several years now, it turned to Ukraine in part to firm up its own grip on power in Russia.


The Maidan and Beyond: Finding Ukraine

Ukrainians flocked to the Maidan to express a “choice for Europe,” but they may also have forged the beginnings of a new Ukrainian identity.


Gay Rights: Why Democracy Matters

The year 2013 featured unprecedented strides for gay rights in some parts of the world, particularly in Western Europe and the Americas, but also startling setbacks elsewhere, as in Russia and some countries in Africa.

PDF icon Gay Rights: Why Democracy Matters

Will Malaysia Follow the Path of Taiwan and Mexico?

The hegemonic-party systems of Taiwan and Mexico began to loosen in the 1980s, eventually yielding to democracy. Malaysia’s ruling party, by contrast, has tightened the reins of power in the face of increasing opposition.


Russia’s Nationalists Flirt with Democracy

Russia has witnessed a growing rapprochement between some of its nationalists and some of its democrats, but this trend is threatened by divisions over the annexation of Crimea.


Is Small Really Beautiful? The Microstate Mistake

Tiny countries have come in for praise as miniature models of democracy, but closer examination tells a mainly more somber tale.


El Salvador’s Beleaguered Democracy

In February 2014, Salvadorans narrowly elected as president a former FMLN guerrilla commander, but he will have to deal with a dire economy and horrific levels of crime.


V-Dem: A New Way to Measure Democracy

In order to mark democracy’s progress and to inform policy, we need to be able to measure democracy in sufficient detail. The V-Dem Project aims to deliver exactly such a tool.


The Ups and Downs of Islamism

A review of Temptations of Power: Islamists and Illiberal Democracy in a New Middle East by Shadi Hamid.

PDF icon The Ups and Downs of Islamism

Election Watch

Reports on elections in Afghanistan, Algeria, Colombia, Egypt, El Salvador, Guinea-Bissau, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Kosovo, Libya, Lithuania, Macedonia, Malawi, Maldives, Mauritania, Panama, Serbia, Slovakia, South Africa, and Ukraine.


Documents on Democracy

  • Excerpts from the June 7 inaugural address of Ukraine's newly elected president, Petro Poroshenko.
  • Excerpts from “My Ideals and the Career Path I Have Chosen,” an autobiographical essay by Ilham Tohti, a professor of economics at Beijing’s Minzu University who was arrested in January on charges of inciting separatism. Tohti, a Uyghur born in Xinjiang, is the founder of Uyghur Online, a website dedicated to fostering understanding between Uyghurs and Han Chinese. (The website China Change first published this translation in April.) 
  • Excerpts from a June 3 speech given in Washington, D.C., by Chinese lawyer and civil-rights activist Chen Guangcheng to mark the impending twenty-fifth anniversary of the massacre at Tiananmen Square.