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autocratic regimes

September 16, 2021

How dictators try, but ultimately fail, to create loyal bureaucrats

Alexander De Juan Dictators depend on committed bureaucrats to stay in power. To instil loyalty, some indoctrinate through enforced military service. Alexander De Juan, Felix Haaß, and Jan Pierskalla warn that this strategy can backfire. Rather than creating truly convinced cadres, conscription can help bureaucrats get better at faking loyalty Read more
August 30, 2021

How political leaders ‘securitise’ external threats to achieve their goals

Dionysios Stivas ‘Securitising’ an alleged external threat can be a convenient tool for political leaders to justify extreme measures and policies. Dionysios Stivas looks at the case of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s handling of asylum seekers in 2015 Read more
August 27, 2021

🌊 Harnessing illiberalism’s analytical leverage

Julian Waller Some contemporary political developments take inspiration from fascism. But analogies between modern anti-liberal reaction and earlier totalitarian ideologies tend to obscure more than they enlighten. The concept of illiberalism allows us to make cross-national, ideational comparisons – especially transhistorical ones, writes Julian G. Waller Read more
August 10, 2021

Holding elections in Libya is not a solution to the country’s deep-seated problems

Hager Ali Only a few months remain before elections in Libya. But Western policymakers are focusing on election preparations and the withdrawal of foreign mercenaries, to the neglect of other pressing matters. Hager Ali argues that unless Libya tackles its political and military problems, elections may prove little more than a sticking plaster on a bullet wound Read more
August 6, 2021

🌊 Back to the future: illiberal democracy feeds on fascist ghosts

Luca Manucci Luca Manucci, in a panoramic survey of the rise of illiberalism in our times, argues that this trend is feeding on authoritarian historical legacies and memories which are being rewritten before our eyes. It is an exercise all democrats should challenge, and resist Read more
July 29, 2021

Political institutions in authoritarian regimes may look democratic, but they reinforce the rulers’ power base

Zeynep Menteşoğlu Tardivo Zeynep Mentesoglu Tardivo analyses the role played by nominally democratic political institutions in authoritarian regimes. She argues that rulers design such institutions to consolidate their power base, even at the cost of economic and political development Read more
June 30, 2021

Playing the long game: why democracy is good for business

Carl Henrik Knutsen Even today, there is no consensus on whether democracies or autocracies are better at generating economic development. Yet, writes Carl Henrik Knutsen, the best recent evidence indicates that democracies do, on average, promote higher growth Read more
May 12, 2021

How dictatorships manage their image

Alexander Dukalskis Authoritarian states deliberately use a number of tools to manage their image internationally, writes Alexander Dukalskis. Creating positive news, distracting and silencing critique, and shaping elite opinion help make the world safer for dictatorships Read more

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Advancing Political Science
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