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Faculty Research Projects

 Current Research Projects

Democracy’s International Challenges

This project explores the widespread contention that new challenges and obstacles have arisen to democratisation and to the spread of democracy around the world. Is democratisation in trouble and, if so, what is the nature of the problem and how serious is it? Are serious, sustainable alternatives to democracy now coming forward? Is democracy promotion running out of steam, and if so do the actors involved in it show signs of having a response? And what can the new challenges facing democratisation and democracy promotion tell us about the future for democratisation and the global political order? Please click here for examples of recent conferences and workshops organized by this project. For more information, please contact Peter Burnell or Richard Youngs.

Accountability and Constitutional Implementation on the African Continent

The Centre for Studies in Democratisation is the ‘northern’ partner in the three-year (2007-2010) British Council-funded project, Implementing constitutional choices: enhancing accountable government on the African continent, together with the School of Law of the University of Cape Town, South Africa, as lead partner in the ‘south’, and School of Law, Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania. Please click here for examples of recent conferences and workshops organized by this project. For more information, please contact Peter Burnell or Renske Doorenspleet.

Building Global Democracy

Professor Scholte is heading a ‘Building Global Democracy’ programme in 2008-11, with the benefit of US$580,00 in grant support. The programme is being convened through the University’s Centre for Studies in Globalisation and Regionalisation. For more information, please contact Jan Aart Scholte.

Deviant Democracies

‘Deviant Democracies: Democratization Against All Odds’, led by Dr. Renske Doorenspleet together with Dr. Petr Kopecky, University of Leiden and Prof. Dr. Cas Mudde, University of Antwerp. For more information, please contact Renske Doorenspleet.

Democracy Support in European Foreign Policies

‘Democracy Support in European Foreign Policies, led by Dr. Richard Youngs in conjunction with Fundación Para las Relaciones Internacionales y el Diálogo Exterior, Madrid. For more information, please contact Richard Youngs.

Ceremony and Ritual in Parliaments of the UK, South Africa and India

Shirin Rai is Director of the Leverhulme Trust Programme on Gendered Ceremony and Ritual in Parliament. For more information, please contact Shirin Rai. See also

Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance

This project (with Dr William Smith, University of Dundee) critically explores the problems and possibilities of developing deliberative idea(l)s at the global level. Participants involved with this project include James Bohman, Garrett Brown, Molly Cochran, Nancy Fraser, Randall Germain, Patrick Hayden, Richard Higgott, Kim Hutchings, Tony McGrew, Peter Newell, Philip Pettit, and Jan Aart Scholte. Click here (word file) for more details. For more information, please contact James Brassett 

Other Current Projects:
  • ‘International Influences on Democratisation’, explored by Professor Peter Burnell and Dr. Richard Youngs (e.g. P. Burnell, Promoting Democracy Backwards, Madrid: FRIDE Working Paper No. 28, November 2006).
  • ‘Global Civil Society; Democratisation of the Governance of Global Affairs’, investigated by Professor Jan Aart Scholte (in conjunction with ESRC Centre for Study of Globalisation and Regionalisation, University of Warwick).
  • ‘Political Party Development in Post-conflict Societies; and Transformation of Rebel Movements into Political Parties’, investigated by Jeroen de Zeeuw.
  • ‘Funding of Political Parties in East Asia’, investigated by Dr. Peter Ferdinand.
  • 'China: democratising one-party rule?', investigated by Professor Shaun Breslin.
  • ‘The Effects of Democratization in Comparative Perspective’, investigated by Dr. Renske Doorenspleet.