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Democratic Development

Stanford University via Coursera

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Overview

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Democratic Development is intended as a broad, introductory survey of the political, social, cultural, economic, institutional, and international factors that foster or obstruct the development, and consolidation, of democracy. Topics will be examined in historical and comparative perspective, and reference a variety of different national experiences. It is hoped that students in developing or prospective democracies will use the theories, ideas, and lessons in the class to help build or improve democracy in their own countries.

This course is primarily intended for individuals in college or beyond, with some academic background or preparation in political science or the social sciences. However, it seeks to be accessible and useful to a diverse international audience, including educators at the secondary and college levels, government officials, development professionals, civil society leaders, journalists, bloggers, activists, and individuals involved in a wide range of activities and professions related to the development and deepening of democracy.

Syllabus

Week 1
Introduction to the Course, Why Democracy?
What Is Democracy? Regime Types
The Third Wave of Democratization and its Ebb 

Week 2
Legitimacy, Authority and Effectiveness
Democratic Consolidation

Week 3
Political Culture and Democracy
Are Democratic Values Universal?

Week 4
Economic Development
Class Structure and Inequality
Civil Society

Week 5
Democratic Transition: Paths and Drivers
Democratic Transition: Types and Means

Week 6
Constitutional Design
Presidential vs. Parliamentary Government
Parties and Party Systems

Week 7
Electoral Systems
Choosing between Different Systems

Week 8
Ethnicity and Ethnic Conflict
Managing Ethnic Conflict
Federalism

Week 9
Horizontal Accountability and the Rule of Law
Controlling Corruption
Democratic Breakdowns

Week 10
International Factors
Promoting Democracy

Week 11
The Future of Democracy

Taught by

Larry Diamond

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