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Democratic Transitions

33 Pages Posted: 31 Jul 2006  

David Epstein

Columbia University - Department of Political Science

Robert Bates

Harvard University - Department of Government

Jack A. Goldstone

George Mason University, Schar School of Policy and Government

Ida Kristensen

Columbia University

Sharyn O'Halloran

Columbia University - School of International & Public Affairs

Abstract

Przeworski, Alvarez, Cheibub, and Limongi (2000) challenge the key hypothesis in modernization theory: political regimes do not transition to democracy as per capita incomes rise, they argue. Rather, democratic transitions occur randomly, but once there, countries with higher levels of GDP per capita remain democratic. We retest the modernization hypothesis using new data, new techniques, and a three-way rather than dichotomous classification of regimes. Contrary to Przeworski et. al. (2000) we find that the modernization hypothesis stands up well. We also find that partial democracies emerge as among the most important and least understood regime types.

Keywords: development, modernization, polical economy

Suggested Citation

Epstein, David and Bates, Robert and Goldstone, Jack A. and Kristensen, Ida and O'Halloran, Sharyn, Democratic Transitions. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=920180 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.920180

David Lester Epstein

Columbia University - Department of Political Science ( email )

420 West 118th Street
719 International Affairs Building
New York, NY 10027
United States
(212) 854-7566 (Phone)
(212) 222-0598 (Fax)

Robert Bates (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Department of Government ( email )

1737 Cambridge Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-496-0919 (Phone)
617-496-6849 (Fax)

Jack A. Goldstone

George Mason University, Schar School of Policy and Government ( email )

3401 Fairfax Drive
Arlington, VA 22201
United States

Ida Kristensen

Columbia University ( email )

3022 Broadway
New York, NY 10027
United States

Sharyn O'Halloran

Columbia University - School of International & Public Affairs ( email )

420 West 118th Street
New York, NY 10027
United States
(212) 854-3242 (Phone)
(212) 222-0598 (Fax)

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