Deepening democracy: explaining variations in the levels of democracy

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Authors
Fowler, Michael W.
Subjects
Democracy
democratization
consolidation
transition
economic development
industrialization
insurgency
violence
diffusion
democratic norms
Philippines
Mexico
Senegal
quantitative
econometric computational model
supply
demand
structural actors
agency
institution
autocracy
Advisors
Trinkunas, Harold
Date of Issue
2010-06
Date
June 2010
Publisher
Monterey, California. Naval Postgraduate School
Language
Abstract
This dissertation identified the determinants of a country's level of democracy. In 1996, President Clinton incorporated democracy promotion as a key element in the U.S. National Security Strategy. Experience since the Cold War demonstrated that the implementation of reforms do not necessarily result in a Western-style democracy. The selection and accountability of a country's leaders resides on a political spectrum from no democracy (i.e., fully autocratic) to full democracy with many variations in between. Using a multi-method approach including econometric, computational, and case study analysis on Mexico, the Philippines, and Senegal, this study proposed and tested a model of democratic change based upon the interaction between a country's socioeconomic conditions, its actors, and its level of democracy. The analysis determined that no one factor could definitively predict a change in democracy. Each factor affected the preferences of key actors whose interaction resulted in changes in democracy. Violence and poverty provided a centripetal effect on polity while economic crisis and the loss of an interstate war had a centrifugal effect that pushed polities towards the extremes of the polity spectrum. Although economic income and development contributed to the potential for democracy, neither factor affected the timing of changes in democracy.
Type
Description
Series/Report No
Department
Security Studies
Organization
Identifiers
NPS Report Number
Sponsors
Funder
Format
xx, 277 p. : col. maps ; 28 cm.
Citation
Distribution Statement
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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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