Subject: Public opinion

October 2021, Volume 32, Issue 4

Trading Democracy for Governance

Majorities across the globe claim to support democratic rule, but their definitions of it vary widely. A look at where publics are willing to exchange their democratic principles for better results—and where they will not.

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April 2021, Volume 32, Issue 2

Why the Future Is Democratic

The swelling pessimism about democracy’s future is unwarranted. Values focused on human freedom are spreading throughout the world, and suggest that the future of self-government is actually quite bright.

October 2018, Volume 29, Issue 4

Liberal Democracy’s Crisis of Confidence

Public-opinion data from Pew Research Center show that global support for representative democracy is widespread, but often thin. Amid rising economic anxiety, cultural unease, and political frustration, citizens are increasingly open to alternative systems of government.

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October 2017, Volume 28, Issue 4

Eroding Norms and Democratic Deconsolidation

“Democratic deconsolidation” on the level of attitudes and beliefs is real, and behind it lies a disturbing rise in tolerance for antisocial behavior, especially among the young. 

October 2017, Volume 28, Issue 4

The Kremlin Emboldened: Putinism After Crimea

“The pursuit of national glory,” which M. Steven Fish counts among the features of Vladimir Putin’s “populism,” is emerging as central to the regime’s legitimation. Unlike previous instances of patriotic mobilization (around the Second Chechen War and the 2008 Georgia war), the current one appears to have evolved into a permanent structure sustaining Putin’s regime.…

October 2017, Volume 28, Issue 4

The Kremlin Emboldened: How Putin Wins Support

The Kremlin’s ability to maintain power and popularity despite an aging leader, an ailing economy, a rallying opposition, and many other domestic and international challenges is puzzling given current theories of authoritarianism. These theories focus on some combination of material interests, institutional engineering, and the charisma and skill of the dictator himself. A close examination…

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January 2017, Volume 28, Issue 1

The Signs of Deconsolidation

Political scientists have long assumed that “democratic consolidation” is a one-way street, but survey evidence of declining support for democracy from across the established democracies suggests that deconsolidation is a genuine danger.

April 2015, Volume 26, Issue 2

Millennials and East Asia’s Democratic Future

East Asia’s millennials have grown up in an age of rapid socioeconomic progress, allowing them to become better educated, more urbanized, and more technologically connected than previous generations. Will they use their collective power to become agents of democratic change?

April 2013, Volume 24, Issue 2

Southeast Asia: Sources of Regime Support

Data from the latest wave of the Asian Barometer Survey show commonalities and variations in the sources of regime support in Southeast Asian countries. Most regimes—democracies and nondemocracies alike—draw political legitimacy from perceptions of effective and upright governance.

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January 2011, Volume 22, Issue 1

Latin America: A Surge to the Center

The left-right ideological divide has begun to narrow in Latin America as citizens and leaders increasingly choose a pragmatic approach to politics and embrace the rules of the democratic game.

July 2005, Volume 16, Issue 3

Gauging Arab Support for Democracy

Despite some moves toward liberalization in the past three decades, all Arab-majority countries remain authoritarian. Nonetheless, opinion surveys show that popular support for democracy in this part of the world is high.

January 2001, Volume 12, Issue 1

Democracy as a Starting Point

Democracy by itself does not put an end to injustice or inequality, but it establishes the most favorable conditions for making progress in the struggle to achieve a just society.

January 2001, Volume 12, Issue 1

How People View Democracy: A Diverging Europe

Citizens of postcommunist countries not only want to be free to say what they think and to vote their conscience; they also want a government that obeys the rules it lays down and is not steeped in corruption.

July 1999, Volume 10, Issue 3

The Churchill Hypothesis

Review of Democracy and Its Alternatives: Understanding Post-Communist Societies, by Richard Rose, William Mishler, and Christian Haerpfer. 

The Signs of Democratic Deconsolidation

In many parts of the world, democracy seems to be under threat. Populism is on the rise, as is public dissatisfaction with such key features of liberal democracy as political parties, representative institutions, and minority rights. Even in the long-established democratic regimes of Western Europe and the United States, attachment to democracy is weakening, particularly…

January 10, 2017