Thanks to a disputed presidential election and a narrowly divided parliament, Taiwan's politics remains tense. Yet the worst of the conflicts that gripped the island seem to have eased, and the difficult political events of the last few years may have some beneficial effects after all.
During the early years of south korea's transition to democracy, expanding popular rule and deepening individual rights went hand-in-hand. But Roh Moo Hyun's presiency has exposed rifts between majority rule and constitutionalism that the country's judiciary is struggling to bridge.
Since most of the world's soverign states are now democracies, there is a growing scholarly focus on "good" or "better" democracy, and on how improvements can not only be measured, but encouraged.
Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo's election as president in her own right capped a campaign that spoke well of Philippine democracy, but yawning gaps in the rule of law obstruct the road to consolidation.
Law-based rule means a set of basic conditions that make civic life possible. A democratic rule of law requires all that and more, however.
Today, Jews the world over are closely and correctly associated with liberal democracy. What are the wellsprings of Jewish tradition and commitment that feed this association?
Confucianism has had a long history of involvement with the state in East Asia, but today there are reasons to think that it can become a positive force in encouraging democracy.
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.
The "system of separations" is a historic achievement that must be defended even against normatively "purer" understandings of democracy.
A review of "Building the Rule of Law: Francis Nyalali and the Road to Judicial Independence in Africa." By Jennifer A. Widner.