Democratic Transition | Wilson Center

Democratic Transition

Fed Up With Corruption, Fresh Faces Take On Brazil’s Political Old Guard

Pedro Markun once thought hacking Brazil’s political system was the best way to change it.

For the last decade, the 32-year-old computer programmer roiled the political establishment with digital intrusions, like cloning the presidential blog to allow comments.

Now, he wants to do more than just shake up the establishment. He wants to defeat it at the ballot box in a bid for a seat in Congress.

New Political Movements and Political Parties Join Forces to Launch Candidates in 2018 Elections

As the campaign season begins to take shape in Brazil, several of the new political movements have aligned with political parties to launch candidates for office. Brazil’s electoral laws prohibit independent candidates. As a result, the political and social movements that have coalesced over the past four years in Brazil, galvanized by the political crisis, must join the party system they have so frequently critiqued in order to gain a seat at the table and work toward the changes they advocate.

Book Talk: The Politics of Police Reform

The police in the post-Soviet space remain one of the least reformed institutions, despite broader democratic transformations. Erica Marat used her new book to examine the conditions under which a meaningful transformation of the police is likely to succeed, using case studies from Ukraine, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan. The panel discussed policing as a reflection of a complex society bound together by a web of casual interactions and political structures. 

2018 Elections in Brazil


Interview with Tabata Amaral de Pontes, Co-founder of Movimento Acredito

Editor's note (10/9/2018): Tabata Amaral was elected Federal Deputy for São Paulo on October 7, 2018, receiving the sixth highest vote count among the state's representatives. She will take her seat in Brazil's Federal Chamber of Deputies on Feburary 1, 2019.

The following conversation has been condensed and edited for clarity. The views and opinions expressed below are the interviewee's own, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Brazil Institute or the Wilson Center.

2018 Brazilian Elections - Timeline

Forecasting Instability: The Case of the Arab Spring and the Limitations of Socioeconomic Data

All stable countries are alike, but all unstable countries become unstable in their own ways. Not surprisingly, the World Bank’s report on the causes of the Arab Spring noted that standard development indicators failed to predict the outburst of popular anger that catalyzed the unrest and revolutions of 2010 and 2011.

Ukraine Quarterly Digest: April – June 2017

The second quarter of 2017 was rather quiet in Ukraine: good news prevailed over bad. Ukrainians obtained the long-awaited visa-free regime with the most of the EU member states, Kyiv successfully hosted the European song competition Eurovision, and the International Monetary Fund agreed to provide another loan tranche. However, little progress was made in the Donbas negotiations and the peacemaking process, and military crises affected the economy.

Ukraine Four Years after the Euromaidan

It has been four years since the mass protests in Ukraine, which eventually led to regime change, began. People protested against a foreign policy shift to Russia; they were eventually beaten up by the police. As the violence escalated and protesters did not give up, despite sustaining numerous casualties, Yanukovych fled the country, and the regime fell.