Consolidating democratic transitions

Studies of democratic consolidation are bifurcated into aggregate and disaggregate conceptualizations of democratic consolidation.The disaggregate approach provides better analytical tools for comparative analysis across cases and a more accurate depiction of the rooting of democratic institutions and of the kind and quality of the emergent democracy.Consolidation on this view is when the actors in a system follow (have informally institutionalised) the formal rules of the democratic institution.Political culture is linked to democratic consolidation.CONSOLIDATION: Put simply, democracy is consolidated when it becomes the "only game in town" (see pg 5 for what this means). Behaviorally, no group is seriously engaged in secession or regime change.Attitudinally, most people accept that democracy is the best form of government (so not only does nobody try to change the regime, nobody particularly wants to).The first step in this task is identifying the important characteristics of their dependent variable, namely a consolidated democracy.They delineate five 'arenas': civil society, political society, rule of law, bureaucratic structure, and economic society.

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Unconsolidated democracies suffer from formalized but intermittent elections and clientelism.Third, a set of explicit rules to which all are bound is another precondition for democratic consolidation.Fourth, a democratic government requires an effective bureaucratic apparatus to maintain the monopoly of violence and to enforce law.Constitutionally, democracy is consolidated when all the major organs of the state act according to the democratic institutions. There need to be five institutions (assuming, first of all, that there is a state): freedoms necessary for development of civil society (not just group memberships), an "autonomous and valued political society" (parties, elections, legislatures, etc.), rule of law (i.e.