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The Quality of democracy in Asia-Pacific: issues and findings
Leonardo Morlino et al.
Source of the information:
International Political Science Review
Contributors to this issue assess the quality of democracy in Asia-Pacific on the basis of both quantitative and qualitative data from an eight-country study. In doing so, they seek to make a contribution to the debate both empirically and conceptually. Empirically the project is the first effort, to the best of our knowledge, to apply an analytical framework developed by Morlino and his colleagues elsewhere in assessing the democratic qualities of Asian-Pacific countries. Conceptually the study advances the debate in two important respects. First, by combining qualitative and qualitative analysis and specifically drawing attention to how various democratic qualities are related, the projects brings new rigor to assessing the quality of democracy. Moreover, in applying the assessment model to a fairly diversified sample of Asian countries, this issue ventures beyond earlier applications of the model and offers directions for conceptual advancement. This study thus in effect sets out two agendas: one for political actors, both collective and individual, and the other for scholars of democracy. Members of the former group need to understand how to promote the necessary aspects of the rule of law within their own countries, securing growth and promoting democratic values among their citizens. Members of the later group need a more refined understanding of the rule of law in all its aspects and what the possibilities are for its effective implementation. This special issue provides a starting point for further research on this question, and hopefully real progress.