Political and Economic Lessons From Democratic Transitions
Editors: Isobel Coleman, Senior Fellow and Director of the Civil Society, Markets, and Democracy Initiative; Director of the Women and Foreign Policy Program, and Terra Lawson-Remer Authors: John Campbell, Ralph Bunche Senior Fellow for Africa Policy Studies, Grzegorz Ekiert, Professor of Government, Harvard University, Joshua Kurlantzick, Senior Fellow for Southeast Asia, Shannon K. O'Neil, Senior Fellow for Latin America Studies, Carlos Pio, Professor of International Political Economy, Universidade de Brasilia, Adjunct Professor, Australian National University, George Soroka, Ph.D. candidate, Harvard University, Jan Teorell, Professor of Political Science, Lund University, and Andrew Wilson, Senior Policy Fellow, European Council on Foreign Relations, Reader in Ukrainian Studies, University College London
Many developing countries have launched transitions from authoritarianism to democracy over the past twenty-five years. While some have succeeded in building relatively strong democracies with shared prosperity, others have stumbled.
As a wave of change continues to unfold across the Middle East, Africa, and Asia, the policy-relevant insights that can be gleaned from recent transitions are more salient than ever. Through case studies on Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Nigeria, Poland, South Africa, Thailand, and Ukraine, Pathways to Freedom explores the structural factors and policy choices that shaped eight important transitions—some successful, others less so. The case studies focus on six themes: socioeconomic inclusion and exclusion, economic structure and policies, civil society and media, legal system and rule of law, government structure, and education and demography. Additional chapters examine these themes in light of the quantitative evidence on democratization and highlight concrete policy recommendations from across the case studies.
With concise historical analysis and forward-looking prescriptions, Pathways to Freedom offers an authoritative and accessible look at what countries must do to build durable and prosperous democracies—and what the United States and others can do to help.
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Joshua Kurlantzick analyzes Indonesia's political, security, and economic achievements since the fall of longtime dictator Suharto in 1998, as well as the country's remaining challenges. Chapter Preview »
Joshua Kurlantzick chronicles the winding path of Thailand, which appeared poised for democratic consolidation in the 1990s but has since degenerated into instability and uncertainty. Chapter Preview »
Andrew Wilson analyzes Ukraine's failure to build a market-oriented democracy based on the rule of law, despite the promise of the Orange Revolution, which captured global attention in 2004. Chapter Preview »
John Campbell explores Nigeria's transition, which, though successful in moving from military to civilian governance, has perpetuated a political system marked by corruption and patronage and an economy dominated by oil. Chapter Preview »
Isobel Coleman and Terra Lawson-Remer offer seven recommendations for leaders in transitioning countries and those seeking to support them in building prosperous and successful democracies. Conclusion »