Democracy and Rule of Law

In the spotlight

Corruption: The Unrecognized Threat to International Security

Acute, structured government corruption impacts many of the West’s security priorities. But the role it plays in exacerbating international insecurity is often overlooked.

Non-Western Roots of International Democracy Support

Rising democracies are becoming key players in global democracy promotion, but they often struggle to detach the external support they provide from their own transition experiences.

Extreme Violence and the Rule of Law: Lessons From Eastern Afghanistan

The international community’s approach to building the rule of law in extremely violent situations can be improved. And a program implemented in Afghanistan can help.

Closing Space: Democracy and Human Rights Support Under Fire

After seeing its reach increase for decades, international support for democracy and human rights now faces a serious challenge.

Egypt’s Post-Mubarak Predicament

Mubarak’s overthrow ushered in more of the same in Egypt—an authoritarian political process. The Egyptian state needs to be completely reinvented.

How to Advance the Rule of Law Abroad

Successful rule-of-law reform requires reformers to think less like development professionals with technical expertise and more like advocacy organizations mobilizing reformers and finding pressure points to change the policy, politics, or culture of countries.

Development Aid Confronts Politics: The Almost Revolution

The overdue recognition that development in all sectors is an inherently political process is driving international aid providers to try to learn how to think and act politically.

  • Article
    Japan’s Faltering Support for Burmese Democracy
    Maiko Ichihara January 22, 2015

    If Japan is to contribute positively to maintaining Burmese progress in political reform, it must closely examine several core tenets of its engagement-based approach toward Burma.

  • Op-Ed
    As Greece Votes, Europe’s Future Hangs in the Balance
    Richard Youngs January 20, 2015 National Interest

    The outcome of Greece’s January 25 election will be pivotal for the country. The way Europe’s political elites respond will have a profound impact on the future of the EU, too.

  • Democracy Aid at 25: Time to Choose
    Thomas Carothers January 13, 2015 Journal of Democracy

    Democracy aid has arrived not at a crisis, but at a crossroads, defined by two very different possible paths forward.

  • Op-Ed
    Why Is the United States Shortchanging Its Commitment to Democracy?
    Thomas Carothers December 23, 2014 Washington Post

    Supporting democracy, human rights, and better governance more effectively will not produce instant solutions to the current global crises. But such aid can be a crucial part of the necessary longer-term solutions.

  • Op-Ed
    How USAID’s Growing Relevance Could Destroy It
    Nathaniel Myers December 12, 2014 National Interest

    The U.S. government certainly needs civilian tools to advance its short-term interests in these difficult environments, but continuing to retrofit or cannibalize long-term USAID programs imperils both its short- and long-term security strategy.

  • Op-Ed
    Learning Lessons on Lessons Learned
    Thomas Carothers December 1, 2014 Alliance Magazine

    Egypt’s principal political actors have repeatedly violated almost all of the received ‘best practices’ of democratic transitions. In fact, the very lessons that the visiting experts most frequently emphasized are among the most glaring failures of Egypt’s attempted democratic transition to date.

  • Op-Ed
    Making a Palestinian State a Reality
    Richard Youngs November 27, 2014 LSE Europp Blog Spanish

    While recognizing a Palestinian state could play a modest role in unblocking peace negotiations, it can only offer a partial solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict.

  • Europe’s Democracy Trilemma
    Kalypso Nicolaidis, Richard Youngs November 12, 2014 International Affairs

    The EU faces a democracy trilemma. Only by enhancing transnational democratic interdependence, national democratic legitimacy, and local democratic vitality will the EU fix it.

  • The Four Magic Words of Development

    The consensus on incorporating transparency, accountability, participation, and inclusion as core principles of aid will only solidify if its strongest proponents recognize how shaky it still is.

  • Op-Ed
    A Wake-Up Call for Democracy
    Rachel Kleinfeld November 6, 2014 Hill

    Democracy requires more people to care about the state of their government than their favorite reality tv show. But as government becomes more distant and less relevant, fewer and fewer people show up.

  • Strategic Europe
    Full Circle in the Middle East?
    Richard Youngs October 16, 2014

    To address the root causes of chaos and disorder in the Middle East, the EU needs to develop a two-pronged approach that focuses on both security and political reform.

  • Eurasia Outlook
    Europe and Belarus in Changing Times
    Richard Youngs September 18, 2014

    This summer’s crisis in eastern Ukraine has made the European Union and Belarus keen to develop a more constructive relationship with each other.

  • Strategic Europe
    Shadow Play in Belarus
    Yekaterina Glod, Richard Youngs June 6, 2014

    EU-Belarus relations have been frozen for years. A debate is now taking shape on whether the new geostrategic context across Europe’s East might unblock this atrophy.

  • Strategic Europe
    Europe and Iran: Past as Prologue
    Richard Youngs October 18, 2013

    The EU is well-positioned to encourage the nascent U.S.-Iranian rapprochement. To do so, the EU will need to draw lessons from its previous period of cooperation with Tehran.

  • Strategic Europe
    From Egypt to Syria: The Middle East’s Interlinked Tragedies
    Richard Youngs September 13, 2013

    Recent tragic events in the Middle East show that the EU needs to adopt a comprehensive, multilateral regional strategy in its dealings with its Southern neighborhood.


Rising Democracies Network

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Carnegie Experts on Democracy and Rule of Law

  • Thomas Carothers
    Vice President for Studies

    Carothers is a leading authority on international support for democracy, rights, and governance and on comparative democratization as well as an expert on U.S. foreign policy.

  • Sarah Chayes
    Senior Associate
    Democracy and Rule of Law Program
    South Asia Program

    Chayes, formerly special adviser to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, is an expert in South Asia policy, kleptocracy and anticorruption, and civil-military relations.

  • Diane de Gramont
    Nonresident Research Analyst
    Democracy and Rule of Law Program

    Diane de Gramont is a nonresident research analyst in Carnegie’s Democracy and Rule of Law Program.

  • Michele Dunne
    Senior Associate
    Middle East Program

    Dunne is an expert on political and economic change in Arab countries, particularly Egypt, as well as U.S. policy in the Middle East.

  • Rachel Kleinfeld
    Senior Associate
    Democracy and Rule of Law Program

    Kleinfeld is a senior associate in the Democracy and Rule of Law Program. She is the founder and president emeritus of the Truman National Security Project.

  • Nathaniel Myers
    Visiting Scholar

    Nathaniel Myers is a visiting scholar in Carnegie’s Democracy and Rule of Law program. His research focuses on the intersection of American foreign assistance and foreign policy.

  • Richard Youngs
    Senior Associate
    Democracy and Rule of Law Program

    Youngs is an expert on the foreign policy of the European Union, in particular on questions of democracy support.


About the Program

The Carnegie Democracy and Rule of Law Program rigorously examines the global state of democracy and the rule of law and international efforts to support their advance.

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