Power sharing and democracy in post-civil war states: the art of the possible (2020)
Power Sharing and Democracy in Post-Civil War States examines the challenge of promoting democracy in the aftermath of civil war. Hartzell and Hoddie argue that minimalist democracy is the most realistic form of democracy to which states emerging from civil war violence can aspire. The adoption of power-sharing institutions within civil war settlements helps mitigate insecurity and facilitate democracy's emergence. Power sharing promotes 'democratization from above' by limiting the capacity of the state to engage in predatory behavior, and 'democratization from below' by empowering citizens to participate in politics. Drawing on cross-national and case study evidence, Hartzell and Hoddie find that post-civil war countries that adopt extensive power sharing are ultimately more successful in transitioning to minimalist democracy than countries that do not. Power Sharing and Democracy in Post-Civil War States presents a new and hopeful understanding of what democracy can look like and how it can be fostered.