Subject: Democratic transition

October 2004, Volume 15, Issue 4

The Reality of Muslim Exceptionalism

The notion that the Muslim world as a whole does not suffer from a deficit in terms of competitive democracy is apealing, but rests on evidence and assumptions that cannot withstand critical scrutiny.

October 2004, Volume 15, Issue 4

Arab, Not Muslim, Exceptionalism

Muslim-majority, non-Arab countries are “overachievers” at electoral competitiveness. Arab countries, by contrast, constitute a distinctive political community that at present is inhospitable to competitive elections.

July 2004, Volume 15, Issue 3

Crafting a Constitution for Afghanistan

As 2004 began, Afghanistan approved a new constitution that represents a key step forward in its political reconstruction. But it is not yet clear whether this new constitution will enable the country to surmount the many challenges that lie ahead.

Free

July 2004, Volume 15, Issue 3

South Africa After Apartheid: The First Decade

Over the ten years since its first nonracial elections in 1994, South Africa has seen its democratic order become more firmly institutionalized, even as the electoral dominance of the ANC has continued to grow.

April 2004, Volume 15, Issue 2

The Imperative of State-Building

Weak or failed states are at the root of many serious global problems, from poverty and AIDS to drug trafficking and terrorism, to the failure of democratic government itself. State-building must become a priority for the world community.

April 2004, Volume 15, Issue 2

Constitution-Making After Conflict: Lessons for Iraq

A through, deliberat, and consultative constitution-making process, which takes account of key lessons learned in other countries, will be essential to the legitimacy of a new Iraqi constitution and to the future of democracy.

Free

January 2004, Volume 15, Issue 1

Iraq: Setbacks, Advances, Prospects

The stakes are enormous and the challenges are difficult, but a look at Iraq months after the toppling of Saddam Hussein reveals that, despite all the frustrating setbacks, grounds for cautious optimism remain.

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.

July 2003, Volume 14, Issue 3

A Model for Post-Saddam Iraq

If Iraq is successfully to democratize and an inclusive democratic culture is to emerge, the Iraqi state must be reconstituted as a federal and strongly liberal system and thoroughly demilitarized.

July 2003, Volume 14, Issue 3

Tibet: The Exiles’ Journey

Almost a half-century after being forced from their homeland, Tibetans abroad, led by the Dalai Lama, have democratized their institutions in hopes that they may one day form the basis for a free and self-governing Tibet.

July 2003, Volume 14, Issue 3

Africa: States in Crisis

Democratic and ecnomic development will become sustainable in sub-Saharan Africa only with the emergence of coherent, legitimate and effective states.

October 2002, Volume 13, Issue 4

Democracy Under Stress in Thaksin’s Thailand

In 1997, Thailand adopted constitutional reforms. Now, five years after the reforms and almost two years into the premiership of Thaksin Shinawatra, we can see the gaps and ironies that the reforms left behind.

October 2002, Volume 13, Issue 4

Pluralism by Default in Moldova

During the 1990s, politics in the small post-Soviet state of Moldova was more competitive than anyone would have expected. Yet there was less to this surprising pluralism than met the eye.

October 2002, Volume 13, Issue 4

Dark Days in Belarus

Why did Belarusians return dictator Alyaksandr Lukashenka to power in September 2001? Could a better-managed opposition campaign have made a difference?

October 2002, Volume 13, Issue 4

Post-Election Blues in Ukraine

In March 2002, three-fifths of Ukraine’s voters chose a party or coalition opposed to the overbearing presidential apparatus of Leonid Kuchma, but the antipresidential forces found themselves frozen out in the new parliament.

April 2002, Volume 13, Issue 2

Bulgaria’s Royal Elections

Last year, Bulgarians elected their newly returned former king as prime minister and then, in a shocking upset,ousted their incumbent president. What do these results portend for the future of Bulgarian democracy?

Free

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. 

January 2002, Volume 13, Issue 1

South Asia Faces the Future: Democracy on Hold in Pakistan

After September 11 and the start of the U.S.-led war on terrorists in Afghanistan, the Pakistani military regime of Pervez Musharraf found itself at the center of world attention. What do these new and dramatically changed circumstances portend for a possible return to elected, civilian rule in Islamabad?

January 2002, Volume 13, Issue 1

Slovenia’s Smooth Transition

The story of this small former Yugoslav republic offers an example of how-if circumstances are right-it may be possible for a country to reform its way out of communism and into parliamentary democracy and a market economy.

July 2001, Volume 12, Issue 3

History and Memory: The Revolutions of 1989-91

There has been surprisingly little celebration of the tenth anniversary of the revolutions that brought down communism. The exaggerated hopes of the time have given way to disillusionment, but the real achievements of many of the postcommunist countries should not be discounted.

July 2001, Volume 12, Issue 3

Serbia’s Prudent Revolution

A bloodless revolution toppled the corruption-ridden 13-year-old regime of Slobodan Milosevic and brought to power a team led by committed democrats. Although strains exist within the new 18-party ruling coalition, there are strong reasons for it to hold together during the current period of transition.

July 2001, Volume 12, Issue 3

Romania’s Politics of Dejection

The elections of 2000 reflected the profound disillusionment of the Romanian electorate with the performance of the centrist government of the past four years, rather than a turn away from democracy itself.

April 2001, Volume 12, Issue 2

Pressing for Openness in Singapore

Although friendly to business, Singapore’s government represses dissent and is far from transparent in its management of public funds. A leading dissident chronicles his struggle for greater openness.

July 2000, Volume 11, Issue 3

Russia Under Putin: One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

Does the election of Vladimir Putin as Russia’s president represent a fundamental turn away from democracy or merely a temporary setback? Although Putin’s apparent indifference to democracy is worrisome, it would be premature to conclude that democracy is lost in Russia.

April 2000, Volume 11, Issue 2

Chile’s Elections: The New Face of the Right

The unexpectedly strong showing of media-savvy rightist candidate Joaquín Lavín in the 1999 presidential elections and the move to the center by Concertación candidate Ricardo Lagos suggest that Chile has begun to put the ghosts of Allende and Pinochet to rest.

April 2000, Volume 11, Issue 2

Chile’s Elections: Change and Continuity

Lavín’s strong showing did not represent an “earthquake” or a dramatic change in the electoral landscape. Voting patterns have remained basically unchanged since 1988, giving Lagos a clear mandate to lead Chile into the next millennium.

April 2000, Volume 11, Issue 2

Electoral Reform and Stability in Uruguay

In the November 1999 presidential election, Uruguayans reaffirmed their strong commitment to democracy, while adjusting to a set of constitutional reforms that profoundly altered the electoral system.

April 2000, Volume 11, Issue 2

Eastern Europe: The International Context

Nowhere else has the impact of international factors on democratization been as apparent as in Central and Eastern Europe. Integration into European and Euro-Atlantic structures is one particularly strong democratizing force.