Region: Comparative Theoretical General

January 2004, Volume 15, Issue 1

Europe Moves Eastward: Challenges of EU Enlargement

As it prepares to go from 15 to 25 member states, the EU has improved the prospects for democracy in the East, but nothing about enlargement promises to resolve the vexing issue of democracy within the EU structure itself.

January 2004, Volume 15, Issue 1

Europe Moves Eastward: Concluding Reflections

The fall of the Berlin Wall gave East Europeans a euphoric sense that they were about to give European democacy a new direction. But as many of their countries prepare to join the EU, little has worked out as expected in those heady days.

October 2003, Volume 14, Issue 4

Electoral Systems: A Primer for Decision Makers

The rules that govern voting will always be of vital importance in any democracy. The beginning of wisdom is to turn from the usual focus on electoral systems in order to reflect on larger goals and the trade-offs among them that may be necessary.

October 2003, Volume 14, Issue 4

Can Democracy Be Taught?

Civic education can enhance democratic values and participation among adults in young democracies, but the training must be frequent and participatory. Otherwise adult civic education may not be worth doing.

April 2002, Volume 13, Issue 2

A New Look at Federalism: The Import of Institutions

A new research project suggests that federalism enhances the ability of regimes to accommodate territorially based minorities. Federal systems, except when imposed by an outside power, significantly help to preserve the peace.

April 2002, Volume 13, Issue 2

Electoral Systems for Divided Societies

Political scientists have long theorized that the use of “preferential” election systems can help promote successful conflict management in divided societies. As it turns out, evidence from five real-world cases supports this conclusion.


January 2002, Volume 13, Issue 1

The End of the Transition Paradigm

Must countries where authoritarian regimes have fallen therefore be “in transition” to democracy? Many democracy promoters seem to think so. Yet trends on the ground in country after country are raising doubts about whether it is true or useful to think of democracy’s prospects in this way.

October 2001, Volume 12, Issue 4

Defying the Odds

A review of Building the Rule of Law: Francis Nyalali and the Road to Judicial Independence in Africa By Jennifer A. Widner.

July 2001, Volume 12, Issue 3

Two Models of Democracy

A review of Patterns of Democracy: Government Forms and Performance in Thirty-Six Countries by Arend Lijphart and Elections as Instruments of Democracy: Majoritarian and Proportional Views, by G. Bingham Powell, Jr.

April 2001, Volume 12, Issue 2

Rediscovering Culture

A review of Culture Matters: How Values Shape Human Progress, edited by Lawrence E. Harrison and Samuel P. Huntington.

January 2001, Volume 12, Issue 1

Politics and Development

A review of Democracy and Development: Political Institutions and Well-being in the World 1950-1990, by Adam Przeworski, Michael E. Alvarez, Jose Antonio Cheibub, and Fernando Limongi.

July 2000, Volume 11, Issue 3

Markets, Law, and Democracy

The experience of “bandit capitalism” or “tyrant capitalism” in postcommunist societies shows that markets cannot work properly without a community of trust and mutual respect. Such a community can be achieved only where there is a rule of law, applied by able and independent judges.

July 2000, Volume 11, Issue 3

Is Pakistan the (Reverse) Wave of the Future?

Pakistan’s descent into authoritarian rule starkly depicts the “triple crisis of governance” that threatens many third-wave democracies. If these problems of governance are not addressed, a new “reverse wave” of democratization could be imminent.

April 1998, Volume 9, Issue 2

Surveying Postmaterialism

A review of Modernization and Postmodernization: Cultural, Economic, and Political Change in 43 Societies, by Ronald Inglehart.