Governance | Wilson Center


Algeria’s Slim Chance for Civilian Rule

After twenty years in power, Algerian President Abdelaziz Boutefika is the latest Arab leader to succumb to a popular uprising of massive discontent, bowing on April 2 to the street and his own military’s demand that he resign immediately.  Four other Arab strongmen met the same fate for the same reason in 2011, and each time the result has been short-term political chaos (Tunisia and Egypt) or long-term civil war (Libya and Yemen).  

Camelia Bogdan Awarded the 2019 Ion Ratiu Democracy Fellowship

Awarded yearly by the Rațiu Family Charitable Foundation, London and the Rațiu Center for Democracy, Turda, in partnership with Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington, DC, the Ion Ratiu Democracy Award and Fellowship aims to support individuals around the world who are working on behalf of democracy as activists or intellectuals, whether they are in exile from repressive regi

Citizenship and Contemporary Direct Democracy

Standing out from all other books on direct democracy, Citizenship and Contemporary Direct Democracy connects the study of direct democracy to the broader field of comparative democratization and to an important strand in normative democratic theory. Analyzing the relationship between direct democracy and representative government, this book is organized around three main sections: the origins of contemporary direct democracy, its functioning, and the ways to improve the use of direct democracy and its abuse.

BREXIT: Tug of War or Revolution

On March 29, 2019, the day originally slated for a United Kingdom departure from the European Union, Parliament rejected for a third time the Prime Minister’s Withdrawal Agreement. Based upon the decision reached among the 27 European leaders last week, Britain will now leave the EU on Friday April 12. Unless a major political change takes place, the Europeans will kick the Brits out with placards saying “Good riddance.”  However, within the British Isles deep divisions exist and their origin merits examination. Two groups have moved beyond jaw jaw to mobilizing and marching.

A Conversation with His Excellency Hamilton Mourão, Vice President of the Republic of Brazil

The first 100 days of the Bolsonaro administration have been marked by political paralysis, in large part due to the successive crises generated by the President’s own inner circle, if not by himself. Amidst the political noise, Vice President Hamilton Mourão has emerged as a voice of reason and moderation, capable of providing direction in domestic and foreign affairs alike.

How Ukrainian Presidents Build Coalitions: Lessons in Power Sharing for the Next President


Why Nazarbayev Resigned and What Happens Next


Kazakhstan’s long-awaited political transition has begun in earnest. Having ruled for almost thirty years, 78-year-old President Nursultan Nazarbayev announced his retirement live on television on March 19th. Nazarbayev stated that the decision was "not easy,” but that he wanted to help with the transition to "a new generation of leaders.”

Russia’s New Consensus: Acquiescence, Not Unanimity


The hardening of the Russian political regime in recent years has prompted some observers to characterize it as “totalitarian.” An attempt to describe the current in the language of the bygone is understandable, but hardly effective.