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Democratic Trajectories in AfricaUnravelling the Impact of Foreign Aid$
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Danielle Resnick and Nicolas van de Walle

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199686285

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199686285.001.0001

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Democratization in Africa: What Role for External Actors?

Democratization in Africa: What Role for External Actors?

(p.28) 2 Democratization in Africa: What Role for External Actors?
Democratic Trajectories in Africa

Danielle Resnick

Nicolas van de Walle

Oxford University Press

The chapter focuses on the impact of one type of external influence, foreign aid, on both democratic transitions and consolidation. After first defining transitions and consolidation, the chapter discusses the various mechanisms through which external factors affect democratization, especially transitions. While foreign aid involves the transfer of financial and material resources from a donor to a recipient, there are three types of mechanisms via which such transfers impact democratization: the diffusion of norms and knowledge, the use of incentives, and the application of coercion. Hypotheses are delineated regarding the influence of development and democracy assistance on not only facilitating transitions, but also on avoiding breakdown and erosion, strengthening vertical and horizontal accountability, and promoting competitive party systems.

Keywords:   African, democratization, development assistance, foreign aid, technical support

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