Frank Brettschneider, Oskar Niedermayer, and Bernhard Weßels (eds.)
Die Bundestagswahl 2005
Analysen des Wahlkampfes und der Wahlergebnisse
Reihe: Veröffentlichung des Arbeitskreises "Wahlen und politische Einstellungen" der Deutschen Vereinigung für Politische Wissenschaft (DVPW), vol. 12
Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften 2007
516 pages, 49,90 Euro
ISBN: 978-3-531-15350-6


Aurel Croissant, Beate Martin, and Sascha Kneip (eds.)
The Politics of Death
Political Violence in Southeast Asia
Reihe Southeast Asian Modernities Band. 4
Münster-Hamburg-Berlin-Wien-London: LIT Verlag 2006
384 pages, 29,90 Euro
ISBN: 3-8258-8860-6

This volume analyzes five aspects of political violence in Southeast Asia: elections and violence; intra-ethnic conflict; communist insurgency; terrorism and religious extremism and lethal crime and politics. Together, the ten case studies on Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines and Thailand challenge the idea that democratic governance will bring an end to internal violent conflict. As some examples in the region suggest, semi-democratic polities in Southeast Asia even may be more successful in reducing levels of internal violence, compared to new democracies in their neighbourhood and other types of political regime they have tried in the past.


Hans-Dieter Klingemann, Andrea Volkens, Judith Bara, Ian Budge, Michael MacDonald
Mapping Policy Preferences II
Estimates for Parties, Electors and Governments in Central and Eastern Europe, European Union and OECD 1990-2003, incl. CD-ROM with MRG/CMP data for 51 countries 1990-2003
Oxford: Oxford University Press 2006
267 pages
ISBN: 978-0-19-929631-6 

This book is probably the most important source of evidence published up to now on the consolidation of democracy in Eastern Europe. It provides estimates of party positions, voter preferences and government policy from election programmes collected systematically for 51 countries from 1990 onwards. Time-series are presented in the text. This also reports party life histories (essential to over time analyses) and provides updated and newly validated vote statistics. All this information and much more is available on the CD Rom sold with the book. The final chapter gives instructions on how to access the data on your own computer. For comparative purposes, similar estimates of policy and preferences are given for CEE, OECD and EU countries. These estimates update the prize-winning data set covered in Mapping Policy Preferences: Estimates for Parties, Electors and Governments 1945-1998 - also published by Oxford University Press.


Wolfgang Merkel, Hans-Jürgen Puhle, Aurel Croissant, and Peter Thiery (eds.)
Defekte Demokratie
Band 2: Regionalanalysen
Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften 2006
485 pages, 39,90 Euro
ISBN: 3-8100-3235-2

This volume analyses from an empirical perspective the opportunities, paths, and results of democratic developments in young countries of transition. Studying selected countries in Latin America, Eastern Europe, and East Asia, the book shows how "defects" emerge in young democracies, in which forms they occur, and under which conditions and how they can perpetuate, change, or be resolved.


Jens Alber and Wolfgang Merkel (eds.)
Europas Osterweiterung: Das Ende der Vertiefung?
WZB-Jahrbuch 2005
Berlin: edition sigma 2006
427 pages, 27,90 Euro
ISBN: 3-89404-005-X

In 2004 the European Union expanded eastward, and the number of member states increased from 15 to 25. An expansion on this scale is unprecedented and tests the limits of integration. Does this expansion represent a radical break in the history of European integration? Does it mean the end of a deepening within the EU? The authors of this year's WZB-Yearbook have tried to answer these questions from a variety of angles. In the first part of the book, "Society", they analyze the similarities and differences between old and new EU states, with particular attention to birth rates, work distribution within the family, poverty and the structures of civil society. The second part, "Democracy", concerns itself with the legitimization problems of an enlarged EU. In the third part, "Europeanization", the authors tackle questions such as whether a union of 25 member states can master problems which remained unresolved within an EU of 15, whether Turkey belongs to Europe and what the EU's eastern expansion means for transatlantic relations.


Wolfgang Merkel, Christoph Egle, Christian Henkes, Tobias Ostheim, and Alexander Petring
Die Reformfähigkeit der Sozialdemokratie
Herausforderungen und Bilanz der Regierungspolitik in Westeuropa
Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften 2006
506 pages, 39,90 Euro
ISBN: 3-531-14750-1

Although a great deal has been written about "the Third Way of social democracy," "The Capacity to Reform: Social Democracy in Power" is the first book since the mid-1990s to offer an encompassing comparative empirical study of policy pursued by social democratic parties in government. The point of departure is the realisation that globalisation, European integration, and social change have devaluated traditional social democratic policy instruments. What concrete answers to these challenges have social democratic governments found over the past decade? In adjusting its policy instruments, has social democracy had to question its goals, blurring its profile vis-à-vis liberal and conservative parties? Or has it successfully upheld old social democratic goals and values even under these changing conditions?
The book sets out to answer these questions. On the basis of country studies (on the United Kingdom, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, and Denmark), the policy measures of social democratic parties in government are subjected to comparative analysis, and their fiscal, employment, and social policy performance assessed. Government revision of traditional social democratic goals and tools is shown to have been associated with a specific performance record. A typology of social democratic parties is developed that can serve as a model for further comparative studies. A comparative account is also given of the explanatory power of the national context for policy adopted by social democratic parties. Finally, the extent to which social democratic parties have been able to use the European Union as a political space for social democratic governance and policy making is examined.


Jürgen W. Falter, Oscar W. Gabriel, and Bernhard Weßels (eds.)
Wahlen und Wähler
Analysen aus Anlass der Bundestagswahl 2002

Wiesbaden: VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften 2005
620 pages, 49,90 Euro
ISBN: 3-531-14137-6

From its outset in 1980, the "Blue Series" has been presenting comprehensive and systematic analyses on elections to the German Bundestag and further internationally relevant outcomes of research on elections and electorates. The latest volume is concerned with the German federal elections of 2002. The first part includes contributions on electoral behavior, media influence, peculiarities of this special election, e.g. the television debates of the candidates, etc. The four chapters in the second part contain longitudinal analyses and see the latest Bundestag elections in the context of a continuity of German federal elections. These contributions focus for example on developments in the impact of candidates’ political orientations over time or on East-West differences in electoral behavior. A third part of the volume deals with principal questions of electoral sociology, e.g. on the extent to which factual issues or candidates’ personalities can influence vote decision. International trends and cross-country comparative analyses are included in the fourth and final section of the book. On the whole, the volume gives insight into the state of the art and continuity of German electoral research and its connections with international research in this field.


Democratization, December 2004, vol. 11, no. 5
Special Issue:
Consolidated or Defective Democracy?
Problems of Regime Change
edited by Aurel Croissant and Wolfgang Merkel
ISSN: 1351-0347


  • Introduction: Democratization in the Early Twenty-First Century
    Aurel Croissant und Wolfgang Merkel
  • What is a ‘Good’ Democracy?
    Leonardo Morlino
  • Embedded and Defective Democracies
    Wolfgang Merkel
  • Liberalization, Transition and Consolidation: Measuring the Components of Democratization
    Carsten Q. Schneider und Philippe C. Schmitter
  • International Actors and Democracy Promotion in Central and Eastern Europe: The Integration Model and its Limits
    Antoaneta Dimitrova und Geoffrey Pridham
  • Autocracy and Democracy in Belarus, Russia and Ukraine
    Timm Beichelt
  • The Slovak Republic: Explaining Defects in Democracy
    Karen Henderson
  • From Transition to Defective Democracy: Mapping Asian Democratization
    Aurel Croissant
  • Faltering Democratic Consolidation in South Korea: Democracy at the End of the ‘Three Kims’ Era
    Hyug Baeg Im
  • Conclusion: Good and Defective Democracies
    Wolfgang Merkel und Aurel Croissant