Democratic Consolidation in the Czech Republic: Comparative Perspectives after Twenty Years of Political Change

No.4(2009)

Abstract
Democratisation in the Czech Republic is viewed from the perspective of two decades after the fall of Communism. The assessment of how this has developed is based on applying the concept of democratic consolidation and in particular the “partial regimes” approach in the literature on that subject. Discussion proceeds along a three-dimensional comparative analysis: the historical, which looks back at previous successful cases of democratic consolidation in post-war Europe, two decades after their transitions began, as well as the Czechoslovak First Republic; the cross-national, which relates the Czech Republic’s progress to other post-Communist new democracies; and the diachronic, which focuses on the evolution of the Czech Republic during its twenty year existence. It is concluded that the Czech Republic has evolved in familiar ways true to the model of liberal democracy. Nevertheless, Czech democracy is not yet fully consolidated, especially with the absence of broad participation in the system for reasons related to both elite attitudes and behaviour and also public mentalities.

Keywords:
Czech democratisation; democratic consolidation; EU political conditions
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