Ethnic Power Sharing: Three Big Problems

Article
March 2014

In severely divided societies, ethnic cleavages tend to produce ethnic parties and ethnic voting. Power-sharing institutions can ameliorate this problem, but attempts to establish such institutions, whether based on a consociational or a centripetal model, face formidable difficulties.

Reconsidering the “Transition Paradigm”

Article
January 2014

Four leading experts on democracy discuss the relevance of the “transition paradigm” in light of the “Arab Spring” and other developments in the world today.

Constitutional Courts: A Primer for Decision Makers

Article
October 2006

Courts empowered to overturn legislative acts have spread rapidly in recent years. If carefully designed and limited, constitutional courts may aid democratic consolidation, but if not, they can become objects of political strife, impediments to democracy, and bad influences on legal development.

Constitutional Courts: A Primer for Decision Makers

Article
October 2006

Courts empowered to overturn legislative acts have spread rapidly in recent years. If carefully designed and limited, constitutional courts may aid democratic consolidation, but if not, they can become objects of political strife, impediments to democracy, and bad influences on legal development.

Electoral Systems: A Primer for Decision Makers

Article
October 2003

The rules that govern voting will always be of vital importance in any democracy. The beginning of wisdom is to turn from the usual focus on electoral systems in order to reflect on larger goals and the trade-offs among them that may be necessary.

The Cracked Foundations of the Right to Secede

Article
April 2003

The claim that ethnic minorities have a moral and legal right to secede from states is a dangerous fiction with perilous implications for divided societies.