Daniel Brinks on the Politics of Institutional Weakness

Daniel Brinks joins the podcast to discuss his new book The Politics of Institutional Weakness in Latin America. He is the coeditor along with Steven Levitsky and María Victoria Murillo. Dan is a professor of Government and of Law at the University of Texas at Austin and a Senior Researcher & Global Scholar of the Centre... Continue Reading →

Institutional Weakness as a Threat to Democracy

  What is Institutional Weakness? Over the past few years political science has woken up to the importance of state capacity in the construction of stable governments. Unfortunately, scholars have not paid the same level of attention to the strength of institutions. It’s easy to take for granted that improvements in state capacity will naturally... Continue Reading →

Guillermo Trejo and Sandra Ley on the Political Logic of Criminal Wars in Mexico

Guillermo Trejo and Sandra Ley join the podcast to discuss the politics behind Mexico's criminal wars. Guillermo is an Associate Professor at the University of Notre Dame. Sandra is an Assistant Professor at CIDE’s Political Studies Division in Mexico City. They are the authors of Votes, Drugs, and Violence: The Political Logic of Criminal Wars... Continue Reading →

Mexico: A Podcast Primer

Mexico: An Overview Tomorrow’s podcast features a conversation with Guillermo Trejo and Sandra Ley about the politics of criminal violence in Mexico. Their research transcends Mexican politics to provide insights about democratization and criminal governance. But it helps to have a basic overview of Mexico’s political system. This is not an outline designed for serious... Continue Reading →

James Loxton Explains Why Authoritarian Successor Parties Succeed in Democracies

James Loxton explains why authoritarian successor parties succeed in democracies through a conversation about conservative parties in Latin America. He is the author of the forthcoming Conservative Party-Building in Latin America: Authoritarian Inheritance and Counterrevolutionary Struggle. This is the 47th episode of the Democracy Paradox podcast.   They really view their history as one of victimization, one... Continue Reading →

What Military Missions Reveal About State Capacity

Military Missions in Democratic Latin America was first published in 2016. It offered an examination of the new roles the military had begun to handle in recent years. Its author, David Pion-Berlin, is a widely known scholar of civil-military relations in Latin America.  In this book, he went beyond traditional civil-military relations to consider the... Continue Reading →

Amy Erica Smith on Brazil Podcast #21

  Amy Erica Smith joins the Democracy Paradox to explain how religion influences politics in Brazil. This is the 21st episode of the Democracy Paradox podcast. It kicks off the second season with an emphasis on world affairs.   Amy Erica Smith on Brazilian Democracy Political Scientist Seymour Martin Lipset wrote, “A person who knows... Continue Reading →

Noam Lupu, Virginia Oliveros, and Luis Schiumerini – Campaigns and Voters in Developing Democracies

There is a necessary divide between political philosophy and political science. Politics as a philosophy examines political concepts as pure abstractions detached from the actual practice of politics. It helps to understand democracy, populism, and liberalism as concepts. But politics as a science examines its practice in the real world. Political science relies on data,... Continue Reading →

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