The Rise of the World’s Poorest Countries

Widely believed to be hopelessly mired in poverty, stagnation, and dictatorship, the developing world has in fact been making steady progress for over two decades in health, education, income, and conflict reduction, along with democracy.

PDF icon The Rise of the World's Poorest Countries

Authoritarianism Goes Global (II): The Leninist Roots of Civil Society Repression

East European communists inherited the Bolshevik obsession with represing
any genuinely independent civil society groups.

PDF icon The Leninist Roots of Civil Society Repression

Authoritarianism Goes Global (II): Civil Society Under Assault

Once widely celebrated, civil society today is regarded as a threat by many governments, leading them to restrict its funding and activities.


Authoritarianism Goes Global (II): The Kremlin’s Information War

The Kremlin is now bringing to the rest of the world the kind of propaganda and conspiracy theories it has been churning out at home.


Authoritarianism Goes Global (II): China’s Foreign Propaganda Machine

China is aggressively working to reshape its image, touting the “Chinese Dream” and its desire for a peaceful rise to power on the international stage.


Decentralizing for a Deeper, More Supple Democracy

Can decentralization deepen democracy or is it doomed to weaken the state? If well designed, decentralization can have a positive impact on national unity, conflict mitigation, policy autonomy, service delivery, and social learning.


After the Arab Spring: Caught in History’s Crosswinds

We are still struggling to understand the mostly bitter harvest of the Arab Spring, but there are a few lessons that can be drawn.


After the Arab Spring: People Still Want Democracy

Data from the Arab Barometer suggest that Arabs have not rejected democracy. In fact, they still by and large believe in it and want it.


After the Arab Spring: How the Media Trashed the Transitions

The Arab experience shows that the same media that facilitate the toppling of dictators can make it harder to build democracy.

PDF icon How the Media Trashed the Transitions

After the Arab Spring: Do Muslims Vote Islamic Now?

Islamic political parties were not especially popular with voters in Muslim-majority countries before the Arab Spring. Has that changed?


After the Arab Spring: The Islamists’ Compromise in Tunisia

How did a potent Islamist movement come to accept a non-Islamist constitution? The answer lies in that movement’s self-protective reflexes.


After the Arab Spring: Are Secular Parties the Answer?

A close look at secular parties in the Middle East today raises doubts about whether they are ready for prime time.


Exploring “Non-Western Democracy”

Often called for but seldom defined with any precision, “non-Western democracy” could end up giving cover to authoritarianism, but also could allow potentially useful democratic innovations to be tried and tested.


A New Militarism in Latin America

Latin American countries are burdened with domestic security problems and institutional weaknesses that have led to a rising political role for the military forces. Are there serious dangers in this “turn toward the barracks”?


The Evolution of Political Order

A review of Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Globalization of Democracy by Francis Fukuyama.


Election Watch

Reports on elections in Burundi, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Haiti, Mexico, Singapore, Sri Lanka, and Trinidad and Tobago.


Documents on Democracy

Remarks by Nigeria's new president Muhammadu Buhari; statement by Azerbaijani investigative journalist Khadija Ismayilova; statements on abuses against lawyers and activists in China


News and Notes

Virtuous Circles of Governance; Francis Fukuyama Honored with Skytte Award; Supporting Young African Leaders; European Democracy Forums; International Forum