The structures and systems representative of democracy are often characterized by greater accountability, reduced corruption, and greater legitimacy across leaders and their constituencies. The conditions that empower, motivate, and sustain democracy are generally the product of social, political, and economic systems and how such systems interact. This interaction tends to drive the very foundation from which development solutions and challenges emerge. Whether it is a respect for the rule of law and human rights or corporate social responsibility and transparency, democratization hinges on understanding unique systems within international affairs. Examples of our scholars’ research include an exploration of trafficking and its broader implications to local and global economies, the assessment of political drivers that underlie civil unrest and conflict, and a comparison of developing economies and judicial reforms. Scholarship in this issue area broadly covers the following topics:
Democratization and New States
Transparency & Accountability
Peacebuilding & Conflict Resolution
For additional information related to scholarly research pursuits in democratization and development, click here.
Conflict resolution and dialogue for peace
The application of conflict resolution models in Muslim communities
Ilham Nasser, Mohammed Abu-Nimer & Ola Mahmoud (2014) Contextual and pedagogical considerations in teaching for forgiveness in the Arab world, Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education, 44:1, 32-52.
Ilham Nasser & Mohammed Abu-Nimer (2012) Perceptions of forgiveness among Palestinian teachers in Israel, Journal of Peace Education, 9:1, 1-15.
Mohammed Abu-Nimer & Ayse Kadayifci (2011): Human rights and building peace: the case of Pakistani madrasas, The International Journal of Human Rights, 15:7, 1136-1159.
Corporate social responsibility and accountability
Environmentally and socially responsible trade and investment
"It's the New Economy, Stupid," with John Cavanagh, The Nation 295, no. 25. (17 December 2012).
"The Development and Agriculture Paradigms Transformed: Reflections from the Small-Scale Organic Rice Fields of the Philippines," with John Cavanagh, Journal of Peasant Studies, 39, no. 5, pp. 1181-1193 (30 October 2012).
Development Redefined: How the Market Met Its Match, with John Cavanagh. Boulder, CO.: Paradigm Publishers, 2009.
"Elusive Accountabilities in the HIV Scale-up: ‘Ownership’ as a Functional Tautology," Global Public Health 9(1-2), pp. 43-56, 2014.
"Tracing Poverty and Inequality in International Development Discourses: An Algorithmic and Visual Analysis of Agencies’ Annual Reports and Occasional White Papers, 1978-2010" (with B. J. Williams), Journal of Social Policy 43(1), pp. 173-200, 2014.
"The Political Economy of Post-Invasion Kabul, Afghanistan: Urban Restructuring Beyond the North-South Divide," Urban Studies 50(15), pp. 3084-3098, 2013.
Co-editor, Oaxacalifornian Reporting Team, Voices of Indigenous Oaxacan Youth in the Central Valley: Creating Our Sense of Belonging in California, UC Center for Collaborative Research for an Equitable California, 2013.
"State Power and Clientelism: Eight Propositions for Discussion,” in Tina Hilgers, ed., Clientelism in Everyday Latin American Politics, Palgrave, 2012.
Co-author, “Proporcionar transparencia ¿Hasta qué punto responde el gobierno mexicano a las solicitudes de información pública?” Gestión y política pública, 20(1), 2011.
Subnational undemocratic regimes in Argentina and Mexico
State territorial reach
Democrats and Autocrats: Pathways of Subnational Undemocratic Regime Continuity within Democratic Countries (Transformations in Governance), Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2015.
“Varieties of Subnational Undemocratic Regimes: Evidence from Argentina and Mexico.” Studies in Comparative International Development, Vol. 48, Issue 1 (2013), 51-80.
"Conceptualizing State Strength. Moving Beyond Strong and Weak States”. Revista de Ciencia Política. Vol. 32, No. 3, (2012), 599–611.
International affairs education
U.S. foreign policy
Civil-military relations in Latin America
Role of the military in the war on drugs
U.S.-Latin American relations; U.S.-Mexican relations; Inter-American relations
International business; multinational corporations
Lessons from the Venezuelan Experience. Co-edited with Johanna Mendelson Foreman, Moises Naim, Joseph Tulchin, and Gary Bland. Baltimore, MD: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1995
Political Parties and Democracy in Central America. Co-edited with William Leogrande and Johanna Mendelson Forman. Boulder, CO: Westview, 1992.
The Military and Democracy: The Future of Civil-Military Relations in Latin America. Co-edited with Johanna S. R. Mendelson and Juan Rial. Lexington, MA: Lexington Books, 1990, published in Spanish as Los Militares y la Democracia. Montevideo: PIETHO, 1991.
Human Rights Matters: Local Politics and National Human Rights Institutions (Stanford University Press, 2009).
The United Nations and Human Rights: A Guide for a New Era (Routledge, 2005, second edition 2009).
Bait and Switch: Human Rights and U.S. Foreign Policy (New York: Routledge, 2004, second edition 2007). Awarded “Best human rights book of the year” prize by the American Political Science Association, Human Rights Section.
Praça, S. and Taylor, M. M. (2014), Inching Toward Accountability: The Evolution of Brazil's Anticorruption Institutions, 1985–2010. Latin American Politics and Society, 56: 27–48.
Matthew M. Taylor (2014). The Limits of Judicial Independence: A Model with Illustration from Venezuela under Chávez . Journal of Latin American Studies, 46, pp 229-259.
Matthew M. Taylor (2013), The Open Question Behind Brazil’s Rise on the World Stage, International Affairs Forum, 4(1): 55-58.
Judging Policy: Courts and Policy Reform in Democratic Brazil. Stanford University Press, 2008. Recipient of the Victor Nunes Leal Prize, for best book in political science and international relations, Brazilian Political Science Association
International Conflict Resolution: 'From Practice to Knowledge and Back Again’," in Deutsch, Coleman and Marcus, eds. Handbook of Conflict Resolution, 3rd ed., 2014 (with Suzanne Ghais).
"Indigenous Peacebuilding,” in Roger Mac Ginty, ed., Routledge Handbook of Peacebuilding (London: Routledge, 2013).
"Impediments to trade across the Green Line in Cyprus: The role of classic barriers and trust," with Omer Gokcekus, Dennis Nottebaum and Jessica Henson, Journal of Peace Research vol. 49, no. 6 (November 2012).