Conflicting Objectives in Democracy Promotion: Do All Good Things Go Together?, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Conflicting Objectives in Democracy Promotion

Do All Good Things Go Together?, 1st Edition

Edited by Julia Leininger, Sonja Grimm, Tina Freyburg


222 pages

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The agenda of external actors often includes a number of objectives that do not necessarily and automatically go together. Fostering security and stability in semi-authoritarian regimes collides with policies aimed at the support of processes of democratization prone to conflict and destabilization. Meanwhile, the promotion of national self-determination and political empowerment might lead to forms of democracy, partially incompatible with liberal understandings. These conflicting objectives are often problematized as challenges to the effectiveness of international democracy promotion.

This book presents systematic research about their emergence and effects. The contributing authors investigate (post-) conflict societies, developing countries, and authoritarian regimes in Southeast Europe, Latin America, Africa, and Asia. They identify the socio-economic and political conditions in the recipient country, the interaction between international and local actors, and the capacity of international and local actors as relevant for explaining the emergence of conflicting objectives. And they empirically show that faced with conflicting objectives donors either use a ‘wait and see’-approach (i.e. not to act to overcome such conflicts), they prioritize security, state-building and development over democracy, or they compromise democracy promotion with other goals. However, convincing strategies for dealing with such conflicts still need to be devised.

This book was published as a special issue of Democratization.

Table of Contents

Foreword 1. Not all good things go together: conflicting objectives in democracy promotion 2. Democracy promotion, empowerment, and self-determination: conflicting objectives in US and German policies towards Bolivia 3. Financing poverty alleviation vs. promoting democracy? Multi-Donor Budget Support in Zambia 4. Coerced transitions in Timor-Leste and Kosovo: managing competing objectives of institution-building and local empowerment 5. Power-sharing and democracy promotion in post-civil war peace-building 6. Two at one blow? The EU and its quest for security and democracy by political conditionality in the Western Balkans 7. Inconsistent interventionism in Palestine: objectives, narratives, and domestic policy-making 8. Peace-building and democracy promotion in Afghanistan: the Afghanistan Peace and Reintegration Programme and reconciliation with the Taliban 9. The two sides of functional cooperation with authoritarian regimes: a multi-level perspective on the conflict of objectives between political stability and democratic change

About the Editors

Julia Leininger is Senior Researcher at the German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) in Bonn. She has previously published a handbook on international organizations (‘Handbuch international Organisationen’ with Dr Katja Freistein) and developed an approach to study international democracy promotion.

Sonja Grimm is Senior Researcher and Lecturer on International and Comparative Politics at the University of Konstanz. She specializes in studies of transition to democracy in postconflict societies and has previously edited (with Prof. Dr Wolfgang Merkel) War and Democratization: Legality, Legitimacy, and Effectiveness, a Democratization special issue (2008, Vol. 15, No. 3).

Tina Freyburg is post-doctoral researcher at ETH Zurich, Switzerland and Leverhulme Trust Visiting Fellow at the University of Warwick, United Kingdom. Her current research projects explore new avenues in the study of the international dimension of democratization, in particular the democratizing potential of transgovernmental networks. For more information refer to [].

About the Series

Democratization Special Issues

The journal, Democratization, emerged in 1994, during ‘the third wave of democracy’, a period which saw democratic transformation of dozens of regimes around the world. Over the last decade or so, the journal has published a number of special issues as books, each of which has focused upon cutting edge issues linked to democratization. Collectively, they underline the capacity of democratization to induce debate, uncertainty, and perhaps progress towards better forms of politics, focused on the achievement of the democratic aspirations of men and women everywhere.

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