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If so, does it constitute at least one-third of the estimated expenditures by candidates and/or parties during the course of a typical campaign?
Does the incumbent enjoy unfair advantages in raising money by virtue of occupying public office? Unfair advantage involves such things as (a) a levy on civil servants to finance the party’s campaigns, (b) widespread and organized use of civil servants for campaign purposes, or (c) use of government materiel for campaign purposes.
Is campaign spending heavily tilted in favor of the incumbent party or candidate(s)?
That is, does the incumbent party or candidate(s) expend more financial resources than their support in the electorate (as judged by polls or general impressions) or the legislature would indicate?
Note: Where campaign expenditures are unreported, or such reports are unreliable, they may be estimated from each party’s campaign activity, e.g., number of political advertisements on TV, radio, or billboards.
Election monitors Were election monitors from all parties and/or from abroad allowed to monitor the vote at polling stations across the country?
How many polling stations (percent) were attended by election monitors (other than those representing the ruling party or clique)?
9. Election Results General question: Do results of an election indicate that a democratic process has occurred?
APPENDIX C What percent of the vote was received by the largest party or winning candidate in the final (or only) round?
Specify name of party or candidate:
What percent of the vote was received by the second largest party or second most successful candidate in the final round?
Specify name of party or candidate:
What percent of the seats in the lower/upper house was obtained by the largest party?
Specify name of party:
What percent of the seats in the lower/upper house was obtained by the second largest party?
Specify name of party:
Do the official results conform, more or less, to actual ballots cast (as near as that can be estimated)?
What was the general verdict by international election monitors and or the international press vis-à-vis the democratic quality of this election, i.e., how fair was it?
Note: If there was disagreement, then please report the mean (average) result, weighting each group by its level of involvement in overseeing this election.
Did losing parties/candidates accept the essential fairness of the process and the result?
10. Leadership Turnover General question: Is there regular turnover in the top political leadership?
Note: Turnover may be regarded as a sufficient condition of effective electoral competition. If turnover occurs (by democratic instruments), contestation must be present—though it may of course still be flawed.
How many years has the current executive been in office? (Source:
“YRSOFFC” variable from the DPI.) How many consecutive terms has the current executive served?
Did the last turnover in power occur through democratic means (e.g., an election, a loss of confidence in the legislature, or a leader’s loss of confidence in his/her own party)?
Ruling party/coalition How many years has the current ruling party or coalition been in office? (Source: “PRTYIN” variable from the DPI.) How many consecutive terms has the current ruling party or coalition served?
Note: relevant only where elections fill the major offices.
Did the last turnover in power occur through democratic means (e.g., APPENDIX C an election, a loss of confidence in the legislature, or a leader’s loss of confidence in his/her own party)?
11. Civil Society General question: Is civil society dynamic, independent, politically active, and supportive of democracy?
a. “Civil society organization” refers to any of the following: an interest group, a social movement, church group, or classic NGO, but not a private business, political party, or government agency. Must be at least nominally independent of government and the private sector.
b. Questions about civil liberties, of obvious significance to civil society, are covered in a separate section.
Existing indicators: the Civil Society Index compiled by the Global Civil Society Project.
How much support for democracy is there among citizens of the country? (Sources: World Values Surveys, Eurobarometer, Afrobarometer, Latinobarometer [see EIU].) What is the level of literacy (a presumed condition of effective participation)? (Source: WDI.) What percent of citizens regularly listen to or read the national news?
Are civil society organizations generally independent of direct government influence (or are they manipulated by the government and its allies such that they do not exercise an independent voice)?
Are there any sizeable civil society organizations that are routinely critical of the government?
Are major civil society organizations—representing key constituencies on an issue—routinely consulted by policymakers on policies relevant to their members (e.g., by giving testimony before legislative committees)?
12. Political Parties General question: Are political parties well institutionalized?
a. Questions about the freedom to form parties and participate in elections are included under Election Administration.
b. Questions below refer to all parties in a polity, considered as a whole. However, larger parties should be given greater weight in calculating answers so that the party system is adequately represented.
Are there well-understood rules governing each party’s business and, if so, are these rules generally followed?
APPENDIX C Is there a clearly identifiable group of party members and is this group relatively stable from year to year?
Do parties issue detailed policy platforms (manifestos)?
Do parties hold regular conventions and, if so, are these conventions sovereign (in the sense of making final decisions on party polity and procedure)?
Do parties have local sections (constituency groups), or are they centered on the capital and on a restricted group of local notables?
13. Subnational Government General question: How democratic is politics at subnational levels?
Note: “Subnational government” refers to governments at regional and local levels.
How centralized is power within the polity, taking all factors into account (for a useful discussion of various relevant factors see Rodden 2004)? As a way of calibrating this, Switzerland may be said to define the decentralized extreme while New Zealand defines the centralized extreme among democratic polities. Most authoritarian regimes are highly centralized, but not all (e.g., failed states such as Afghanistan or Somalia). To clarify, the question refers to the relatie power balance between national and subnational levels; it does not attempt to judge the actual strength of control at either level. That is, whether both levels of government are weak or strong is irrelevant; what is relevant is only their power relative to each other. The question pertains to practical power not to formal/constitutional power. Note that centralization is usually not considered a definitional component of democracy: New Zealand, most would agree, is no less democratic than Switzerland. However, if power is highly centralized in a very large country—say, India—one may infer a significant problem of local accountability. In any case, the degree of centralization/decentralization gives meaning to the next question.
How democratic are electoral politics at the subnational level? If practices differ appreciably between national and subnational levels, and perhaps even between regional and local levels, it may be necessary to complete the previous sections—Election Participation, Election Administration, Election Results, Leadership Turnover—for different levels of government.
Gerring, J.; Bond. P.; Barndt, W.; and Moreno, C. 2005. Democracy and Growth: A Historical Perspective. World Politics 57(3):323-364.
Huntington, Samuel P. 1991. The Third Wae: Democratization in the Late Twentieth Century.
Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma Press.
McFaul, M. 2005. Transitions from Postcommunism. Journal of Democracy 16(3): 5-19.
Munck, G. L. 2006. Standards for Evaluating Electoral Processes by OAS Election Observation Missions. Paper prepared for Organization of American States.
Persson, T., and Tabellini, G. 2006. Democratic Capital: The Nexus of Political and Economic Change. NBER Working Paper. No. 12175.
Rodden, J. 2004. Comparative Federalism and Decentralization: On Meaning and Measurement. Comparatie Politics (July):481-500.
D Understanding Democratic Transitions
and Consolidation from Case Studies:
Lessons for Democracy Assistance
Sunday, March 4, 2007 7:30 p.m. Planning Meeting and Working Dinner Monday, March 5, 2007 9:00 Welcome Remarks 9:05 Opening Address and Overview Michael McFaul, Director, CDDRL, Stanford Uniersity Jack Goldstone, George Mason Uniersity and Chair, NASCEUDAP Committee 9:35 Panel I: What Have We Learned About Democratic Transitions: Pacts or Protests?
Moderator: Jack Goldstone, George Mason Uniersity APPENDIX D Nancy Bermeo, Princeton University Adrian Karatnycky, Freedom House, Inc.
Terry Karl, Stanford University Michael McFaul, Stanford University 10:20-10:40 Break 10:40-11:00 Panel Discussion Session 11:00-12:00 Open Discussion Session 12:00 LUNCH 1:00 Panel II: What Have We Learned About Democratic Transitions: Are Certain Socioeconomic or Political Conditions Required?
Moderator: Larry Garber, New Israel Fund Sheri Berman, Barnard College Michael Bratton, Michigan State University Jason Brownlee, University of Texas at Austin Lucan Way, University of Toronto 1:45-2:05 Panel Discussion Sessions 2:05-2:45 Open Discussion Sessions 2:45-3:00 Break 3:00 Panel III: What Have We Learned About Democratic Transitions: What Comes First? What Role Will Foreign Assistance Play?
Moderator: Jeremy Weinstein, Stanford Uniersity Tom Carothers, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Gerry Hyman, Center for Strategic and International Studies Cynthia McClintock, George Washington University Risto Volanen, State Secretary, Finish Prime Minister’s Office 3:45-4:05 Panel Discussion Session 4:05-4:45 Open Discussion Session 6:30 CONFERENCE DINNER APPENDIX D
OvERvIEW OF NATIONAL ACADEMIES’ MISSION AND TASkSThe field visits were part of a larger project conducted by the National Academies (NA) for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the purpose of which was to develop an overall research and analytic design that will lead to specific findings and recommendations for the Strategic and Operational Research Agenda (SORA) of the democracy and governance (DG) programs. These findings and recommendations were developed through the vetting of a variety of methodologies for assessing and evaluating democracy assistance programs.
OBJECTIvES OF FIELD vISITSIn support of these overall project objectives, the field visits were
intended to serve two major purposes:
1. The collection of information for the NA committee to inform its
recommendations, in particular to increase members’ understanding of:
• how USAID programs are developed and implemented in the field as background for its recommendations to improve program evaluation and understanding of program successes and failures,
• what data, evidence, and other resources are primarily or 1 Some of the material in this Appendix also appears in Chapters 6 and 7.
uniquely available in the mission or in country to support improved program evaluation,
• the perspectives of mission personnel and USAID implementers regarding the feasibility of potential options for improving program evaluation;
2. to provide an opportunity to explore a “proof of concept” of the committee’s preliminary recommendations, in particular the feasibility of introducing more rigorous approaches to program evaluation.