Democracy as an equilibrium

Adam Przeworski

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

    Abstract

    Observation shows that while democracy is fragile in poor countries, it is impregnable in developed ones. To explain this pattern, I develop a model in which political parties propose redistributions of incomes, observe the result of an election, and decide whether to comply with the outcome or to launch a struggle for dictatorship. Democracy prevails in developed societies because too much is at stake in turning against it. More income can be redistributed in developed than in poor countries without threatening democracy. Limits on redistribution arise endogenously, so that constitutions are not necessary for democracy to endure. A democratic culture characterizes the equilibrium.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)253-273
    Number of pages21
    JournalPublic Choice
    Volume123
    Issue number3-4
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jun 2005

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    democracy
    redistribution of income
    dictatorship
    redistribution
    constitution
    election
    income
    Democracy
    society
    Redistribution
    Income
    Dictatorship
    Elections
    Constitution
    Political parties

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Economics and Econometrics
    • Sociology and Political Science

    Cite this

    Democracy as an equilibrium. / Przeworski, Adam.

    In: Public Choice, Vol. 123, No. 3-4, 06.2005, p. 253-273.

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

    Przeworski, A 2005, 'Democracy as an equilibrium', Public Choice, vol. 123, no. 3-4, pp. 253-273. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11127-005-7163-4
    Przeworski, Adam. / Democracy as an equilibrium. In: Public Choice. 2005 ; Vol. 123, No. 3-4. pp. 253-273.
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