Democracy and Conceptual Contestability : Reconsidering Conceptions of Democracy in Democracy Promotion

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dc.contributor.author Kurki, Milja
dc.date.accessioned 2011-11-21T10:55:34Z
dc.date.available 2011-11-21T10:55:34Z
dc.date.issued 2010-09
dc.identifier.citation Kurki , M 2010 , ' Democracy and Conceptual Contestability : Reconsidering Conceptions of Democracy in Democracy Promotion ' International Studies Review , vol 12 , no. 3 , pp. 362-386 . , 10.1111/j.1468-2486.2010.00943.x en
dc.identifier.issn 1468-2486
dc.identifier.other PURE: 173808
dc.identifier.other dspace: 2160/7696
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2160/7696
dc.description Sponsorship: European Research Council, Political Economies of Democratisation, ERC grant number 202 596 en
dc.description.abstract Democracy is a deeply contested concept: historically, complex debates have revolved around the meaning of democracy and the plausibility of different ‘models of democracy.’ However, democracy’s conceptual contestability has received diminished attention in the post-Cold War democracy promotion debate as the attention of democracy promotion actors and scholars has turned to fine-tuning of policies through which a liberal democratic model can be successfully encouraged. It is argued here that the focus on the extension of the reach of the liberal demo- cratic mode of governance has resulted in a conceptually impoverished appreciation of the multiple meanings that the idea of democracy can take. It is argued that the ‘essential contestability’ of the idea of demo- cracy is not adequately recognized and tackled, which in turn has important effects for the ability of democracy promotion scholars, as well as practitioners, to take into account the consequences that consid- ering alternative (non- or extra-liberal) models of democracy might have for democracy promotion. To move the debate forward, I explore here, primarily in conceptual and theoretical terms, what serious engagement with the essential contestability of democracy might mean for democracy promotion. I argue that it entails a two-fold move: ‘plura- lization’ and ‘contextualization’ of the conceptions of democracy. The latter part of the article examines in detail the reasons that might exist for considering such a move in framing the study and the practice of democracy promotion, as well as the potential dangers that might be involved. en
dc.format.extent 25 en
dc.language.iso eng
dc.relation.ispartof International Studies Review en
dc.title Democracy and Conceptual Contestability : Reconsidering Conceptions of Democracy in Democracy Promotion en
dc.type Text en
dc.type.publicationtype Article (Journal) en
dc.identifier.doi http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2486.2010.00943.x
dc.contributor.institution Department of International Politics en
dc.description.status Peer reviewed en


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