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Governance in Business and Government. Democratization. Democratisation. ‘ Democratisation studies examine and explain the processes whereby government, states and societies attempt to move away from some form of authoritarianism towards some form of democracy ’ (Grugel: 2002). Democracy.

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  • ‘Democratisation studies examine and explain the processes whereby government, states and societies attempt to move away from some form of authoritarianism towards some form of democracy’ (Grugel: 2002)
  • ‘a mode of decision-making about collectively binding rules and policies over which the people exercise control, and the most democratic arrangement [is] that where all members of the collectivity enjoy effective equal rights to take part in such decision-making directly.’ (Beetham: 1992)
democratisation in the arab world
Democratisation in the Arab World
  • How did it all start?
    • On 17 December 2010, Mohamed Bouazizi, a poor vegetable seller had his cart confiscated and was humiliated by a policewomen in the town of Sidi Bouzid. Municipal officials refused to see him. Bouazizi doused himself in a flammable liquid and set fire to himself.
  • This was the catalyst for riots and protests in Tunisia which then spread across the Arab World to challenge other longstanding authoritarian regimes
democratisation in the arab world1
Democratisation in the Arab World
  • Tunisia
    • After several weeks of anti government demonstrations, the Jasmine Revolution, President Ben Ali fled the country
    • 23 years in power
    • First interim PM too closely identified with old regime and replaced by opposition figures
    • Elections on 24 July to choose a constituent assembly to rewrite constitution
democratisation in the arab world2
Democratisation in the Arab World
  • Egypt
    • Started with a protest demonstration on 25 January 2011 a national holiday to commemorate the police
    • From ‘a day of rage’ the protest movement moved towards demands for regime change
    • Daily mass protests focused on Tahrir Square
    • 3 March President Mubarak resigned after over 3 decades in office
    • Supposed to be a referendum on constitutional amendment in June followed by an election 6 weeks later
    • Over 400 killed
democratisation in the arab world3
Democratisation in the Arab World
  • Libya
    • Protests began in Benghazi after police shot two men at a rally demanding the release of a human rights lawyer
    • Colonel Gaddafi (and family) in power for 40 years although he says People’s Committees’ and General People’s Congress rule
    • Developed into civil war
what caused the uprisings
What caused the uprisings?
  • First, what DID NOT cause the uprisings:
    • No foreign agency
    • No Al Queda or associates
    • No religious-based ideology
    • No disaffected elites
    • No military participation
  • The democratic uprisings or revolutions came as a surprise – especially to foreign powers which had propped up authoritarian regimes
what caused the uprisings1
What caused the uprisings?
  • Poverty
  • Social exclusion
  • Demographic bulge of young people with no work
  • Corruption
  • Personal enrichment of leaders and cronies
  • Rising prices
  • Awareness of political alternatives
  • Lack of political freedoms
  • Feelings of relative deprivation
  • Higher levels of education
general observations the events
General observations: the events
  • The uprisings revealed disillusionment and anger across the region
  • Great structural tensions
  • Secular rather than religious character
  • Distributed leadership in uprisings
  • Coming together of different groups (classes, gender, ideologies)
  • Determination to take national control of history
  • Countries least effected made early concessions or had superior coercive powers
future prospects
Future prospects
  • Egypt
    • Interim government
    • Working towards constitutional change
    • Elections keenly contested –Islamist President
    • Military a key in Egypt as other government institutions dysfunctional and subject to strikes
    • Muslim Brotherhood could do well in Egypt
    • Egypt still unsettled – riots going on – as people annoyed at slow pace of change and some anti-democratic decisions of the President
  • Most prosperous of the countries in North Africa
    • Former ruling party banned
    • Constitutional change
    • 100+ political parties registered
    • Elections in October 2011
    • 90% turn-out
    • Islamist victory BUT people don’t seem to want an Islamist state RATHER see Islamists as providing the cleanest break with corrupt authoritarian past
  • Murder of leading opposition politician in February 2013
  • Protests and counter protests
  • PM dissolved government and tried unsuccessfully to set up cabinet of technocrats
  • His party objected and he resigned
future prospects1
Future prospects
  • Libya
    • A civil war in Libya
    • Government forces fired live ammunition at protesters – more severe reaction than elsewhere
    • Extraordinary outpouring of hatred for Gaddafi regime from his grassroots opponents
    • Gaddafi forces included foreign mercenaries
    • Some Libyan military defected as rebels marched on to defeat Gaddafi
    • NATO support for rebels
    • Now interim government and patchwork of armed militias
    • Human rights abuses
    • Difficult to judge who has legitimacy and what system of government will emerge
future prospects2
Future prospects
  • Syria
    • President Assad took over from father in 2000 and promised reform
    • Little has changed including 1963 Emergency Law
    • Protests started in March 2011 and spread
    • At least 60,000 killed
    • Military deserters and some citizens turned struggle into armed conflict
    • Government calls them ‘terrorists and armed gangs’ and talks of ‘international conspiracy’
    • Arab League peace monitors no effect
    • Russia and China prevented action from UN
    • No sign of resolution
future prospects3
Future prospects
  • Protests still continue in countries across the region, most seriously in Yemen
  • Some regimes (eg Jordan, Algeria) have attempted to placate protesters by promising changes or bringing in the opposition to the political process (eg Bahrain)
  • After decades of authoritarianism there is a lack of democratic institutions – not only popularly elected parliaments but a free press, an independent civil society, freedom of speech
  • HOWEVER, these are authentically Arab uprisings that will find resolution within the countries concerned BUT in what ways we don’t know.
hybrid regimes
Hybrid regimes
  • Has been argued that after the Third Wave of democratisation, many regimes are hybrids
    • Not consolidated democracies
    • Elements of authoritarianism
  • Consolidation has occurred
    • Behaviourally when no significant groups are trying to overthrow democracy or secede
    • Attitudinally when the majority of citizens regard democratic forms as the best way to govern collective life
    • Constitutionally when the formal laws and rules are seen as the legitimate ways to resolve conflicts
hybrid democracies
Hybrid democracies
  • Diamond’s (2002) scheme of hybrid democracies
    • Liberal democracy
    • Electoral democracy
    • Ambiguous
    • Competitive authoritarian
    • Hegemonic closed authoritarian
    • Politically closed authoritarian

Regime Types in Southeast Asia 2001 and 2007

Numerical values = 2007 Freedom House scores for ‘political rights’ and ‘civil liberties’

On a scale of 1-7 where 1 is most free and 7 is least free

deepening democracy
Deepening democracy
  • Democratic consolidation is rare in poor countries and UN and other organisations work to reduce ‘democratic deficits’ and ‘deepen democracy’ as measured by eg
    • Voter turn-out
    • Women in parliament
    • TU membership
    • NGOs
    • Open media
    • Transparency
    • Legal impartiality
    • Checks on chief executive