The successes and failures of democracy in the post-Soviet republics

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Authors
Dolby, Allison Elizabeth
Subjects
democratization
post-Soviet
constitutional frameworks
parliamentary
presidential
semi-presidential
democratic development
Russia
Kyrgyzstan
leadership
balance of power
leadership dynamics
democratic transition
Advisors
Tsypkin, Mikhail
Yost, David
Date of Issue
2016-09
Date
Sep-16
Publisher
Monterey, California: Naval Postgraduate School
Language
Abstract
The purpose of this thesis is to answer the question what factors contribute to the differing levels of democratic success in the post-Soviet republics? The thesis draws on political theory and historical approaches to examine all 15 of the post-Soviet republics as a group in order to identify common trends, and then investigates two particular case studies—Russia and Kyrgyzstan—for further insight. Using the Freedom House scores to measure levels of democratic development, the thesis focuses on two important factors that contribute to democratic success: the balance of power among the elites at the moment of transition and the nature of the initial constitutional framework. The first theory posits that the power dynamics of leadership between the democrats and those supporting the ancien régime are crucial in determining the level of democratic development. The second theory concentrates on the impact for democracy of the type of constitutional framework adopted—whether parliamentary, presidential, or some mixture of the two. The thesis examines the merits of these two variables and concludes that an analysis combining them offers the most useful explanation of what contributes to the differing levels of democratic success.
Type
Thesis
Description
Series/Report No
Department
National Security Affairs
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NPS Report Number
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Distribution Statement
Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited.
Rights
This publication is a work of the U.S. Government as defined in Title 17, United States Code, Section 101. Copyright protection is not available for this work in the United States.
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