During the last two decades scholars of democratization have increasingly paid attention to how external actors contribute to pushing democratization forward in countries all around the world. The literature on the external dimension of regime change, however, is still in its nascent, and several problems therefore haunt it. For one, focus has remained exclusively on positive external factors, while the negative side of the coin has largely been left untouched. Moreover, most studies have so far lacked methodological stringency, and our understanding of how external actors exert their influence has remained insufficient.
With this dissertation, the imbalance is sought rectified. A comprehensive analytical framework for the study of external actors is worked out, a theoretical model, based on Levitsky and Way’s leverage-linkage model but adding a more solid micro-foundation in what is termed domestic gatekeeper elites is constructed, and finally, a comparative study mapping both the positive and negative influence exerted by Russia and the EU in Moldova, Ukraine, and Belarus in 1991-2010 is conducted. The study gives support to the theoretical argument proposed, and it clearly demonstrates that to fully understand political development, both the positive and negative side of the external dimension must be accounted for.
Udgivet marts 2012
Udgivet hos Lynne Rienner Publishers:
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