democracy

Party Switching in Mexico’s Troubled Democracy

October 12, 2016

Mexico’s 2014 constitutional reform to allow for the reelection of federal deputies and senators limits the ability of party switchers to seek reelection.1 Why? This limitation on reelection speaks to an increasing concern over party switching in Mexico, an issue I take up in a recent study published in Latin American Politics and Society.2  In the article, I seek to explain why politicians in Mexico switch political parties.

Civil Society and Democracy in Times of Political Crisis

October 11, 2016

Last year, the Obama administration announced a new civil society initiative, Stand with Civil Society, calling for support of civil society groups across the world and acknowledging the role they play in pushing for citizen engagement, equity, transparency and accountability.  These positive perspectives of civil society pushing for more democratic governance contrasts with more skeptical views that civil society may actually negatively impact the prospects for d

Is Argentina Still A Delegative Democracy?

October 11, 2016

In a recent article I discussed how the death of Argentine prosecutor Alberto Nisman has fomented mass protests and suspicion throughout Argentina that the government might be complicit in his death. In this piece I provide evidence that the handling of Nisman’s death by the Fernandez administration may support the claim that Argentina continues to function as a delegative and not representative democracy.

The Impact of Political Decentralization: A Natural Experiment in Uruguay

June 15, 2016

Is political decentralization an effective institutional reform to promote citizens´ engagement with democracy? The potential democratizing effect of political decentralization reforms has been a matter of substantial theoretical and empirical debate. Analyses of the causal impact of decentralization reforms have reached very dissimilar conclusions (Eaton and Connerley 2010), and they have been strongly marked by normative preferences.

Civil Society and Democracy in Times of Political Crisis

June 14, 2016

Last year, the Obama administration announced a new civil society initiative, Stand with Civil Society, calling for support of civil society groups across the world and acknowledging the role they play in pushing for citizen engagement, equity, transparency and accountability.  These positive perspectives of civil society pushing for more democratic governance contrasts with more skeptical views that civil society may actually negatively impact the prospects for developing strong democrac

Political Clientelism, Vote-Buying and Democracy: a Reflection on Mexico

April 26, 2016

Political clientelism is a widespread phenomenon all over the globe, and Mexico is certainly no exception; it is rather a living laboratory where several varieties of the practice are cultivated. How should we evaluate this practice? Mass adult suffrage and electoral competition provides even the most humble citizen with a resource, as Scott (1969: 1143) pointed out many decades ago.

Democratic Politics and Social Welfare in the Southern Cone: a Comparative Analysis

October 10, 2016

Democracy does not ensure progressive welfare outcomes: yet, in Latin America such outcomes have been more common under democracy than under authoritarian governments or governments that strongly limit political and economic freedoms.1 I examine the cases of Uruguay and Paraguay to illustrate and qualify this position.

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