in: Journal of democracy, Volume 20, Issue 3, p. 122-135
ISSN: 1045-5736 (print), 1086-3214 (electronic)
It appears that elections increase chances for a smooth transition to democracy only in competitive authoritarian regimes where political instability already exists. This essay explores the process the author calls 'competitive clientelism' whereby elections supply ruling elites in authoritarian regimes opportunities to compete over limited sets of state resources that they then distribute to local elites a structure that reduces demand for any change to democracy. Adapted from the source document.