Transparency, Protest and Democratic Stability

James R. Hollyer, B. Peter Rosendorff, James Raymond Vreeland

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Democratic rule is maintained so long as all relevant actors in the political system comply with the institutional rules of the game-democratic institutions must be self-enforcing. We examine the role of transparency in supporting a democratic equilibrium. Transparency improves the functioning of elections: In transparent polities, elections more effectively resolve adverse selection problems between the public and their rulers. Transparency increases popular satisfaction with democracy and inhibits challenges to the democratic order. We provide a game-theoretic model, test these claims, and find they enjoy empirical support. Transparency is associated with a reduction in both the probability of democratic collapse and of the irregular removal of democratic leaders. Transparency stabilizes democratic rule.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)1251-1277
    Number of pages27
    JournalBritish Journal of Political Science
    Issue number4
    StatePublished - Oct 1 2019


    • democratic consolidation
    • leader removal
    • transparency

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Sociology and Political Science


    Dive into the research topics of 'Transparency, Protest and Democratic Stability'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this