Policy Memos

Ukrainian Teeter-Totter: The Vices and Virtues of Neopatrimonial Democracy

Policy Memo:

120

Publication Date:

10-2010

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A successful, consolidated democracy requires all stakeholders to accept unalterable ground rules—when certain “points of no return” get crystallized and democratic, rational procedures are adhered to. Why are some polities successful in entrenching democratic practices while others fail?

Ukraine’s 2004 Orange Revolution, which culminated in Viktor Yushchenko’s victory, led to a certain democratization of political life and the acceptance by all political actors of new rules of political competition. In turn, Viktor Yanukovych’s return to power through the 2010 presidential election has been viewed by many analysts as a curb to democracy and a return to the semi-authoritarian methods of former president Leonid Kuchma. [...]

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Head of the Department, Professor, Political Science
Kharkiv National University