During this week also taught me more about the concept and the new waves of democratization that it is the transition to a more democratic political regime. It may be the transition from an authoritarian regime to a full democracy, a transition from an authoritarian political system to a semi-democracy or transition from a semi-authoritarian political system to a democratic political system.
The outcome may be consolidated as it was for example in the United Kingdom or democratization may face frequent reversals as it has faced for example in Argentina. Different patterns of democratization are often used to explain other political phenomena, such as whether a country goes to a war or whether its economy grows. Democratization itself is influenced by various factors, including economic development, history, and civil society.
For the new wave of democratization, I think in the South Asian region has experienced a democratic resurgence in the recent past while other regions of the world were suffering setbacks. All the South Asian countries now have a democratic system. Almost 1.3bn South Asian people, constituting about one-fifth of the world’s population, have chosen democratic governance – but this transition to democracy is still fragile and vulnerable.
There have also been democratic failures in South Asia. The democratic credibility of the Karzai regime in Afghanistan and Sri Lanka’s Rajapaksa regime has been seriously eroded. Both countries are caught in internal conflicts. The main challenge that the new wave of democracy faces in South Asia is its consolidation, the translation of the aspirations and values unleashed during the process of transition into concrete and viable institutions. The degree and nature of this challenge varies from country to country. ( extract from International Idea Institute for democracy and electorial asistance)