The Effect of Economic Development on Democratization
tional economy and system of states, as they shape the first two balances and
constrain political decision-making.” (73). There is a change from authoritarianism to democracy when there is a shift in the balance of class power. Her findings stated that development produces democracy because it changes the balance of class power by weakening landowners, and giving the lower classes more influence. However, it is not considered that factors besides economic development may lead to a shift in the balance of class power.
There is a relationship that exists between development and democracy, but it is not an endogenous one. Huber’s findings are intriguing, but neglect the to take into account the possibility of other factor’s contributing to a shift in the balance of class power. When GDP per capita is used to define economic development, it does not show any chance of a dictatorship transitioning to democracy. However, no country with a GDP level of $6,055 has ever un-democratized (Pzerworski). There is an association between democracy and economic development- it is an exogenous relationship. As Lipset concluded, democracies tend to have higher economic development than non-democracies. However, based solely off of GDP, there is no evidence that a nation will become a democracy.
Huber, Evelyne, Dietrich Rueschmeyer, and John D. Stephens. 1993. “The Impact of
Economic Development in Democracy.” Journal of Economic Perspectives 7(3): 71-85.
Lipset, S.M., Seong, K., and J.C. Torres. 1993. “A comparative analysis of the social
requisites of democracy.” International Social Science Journal;) 45 (2): 155-176.
Przeworski, Adam, Mike Alvarez, Jose Antonio Cheibub, and Fernando Limongi. 2000.
Democracy and Development: Political Regimes and Economic Performance in
the_ World. 1950-1990_. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (Chap. 2)