- News and Notes
Conference on Third Wave Democracies Held in Taiwan
On 27–30 August 1995, the National Endowment for Democracy’s International Forum for Democratic Studies and the Institute for National Policy Research (INPR) of Taiwan co-sponsored a major conference on “Consolidating the Third Wave Democracies: Trends and Challenges” in Taipei. More than 60 scholars and democratic leaders from over 25 countries attended, along with numerous participants from Taiwan.
An opening address by President Lee Teng-hui of Taiwan appears in this issue of the Journal. During the meeting, the participants also heard special presentations by Premier Lien Chan; James Soong, governor of Taiwan province; and Chen Shui-bian, mayor of Taipei.
President Lee’s address was followed by a keynote speech by Samuel P. Huntington and a panel on “Challenges of Democratic Consolidation,” featuring a paper by Juan Linz and Alfred Stepan, with comments by Robert Dahl. The remaining panels focused on institutional designs and party systems; civil-military relations; regional trends; civil society; external influences; democracy and development; democratization in Taiwan; and prospects for mainland China.
Other prominent political scientists who served as paper presenters or commentators included Bolívar Lamounier; Guillermo O’Donnell; Abraham Lowenthal; Robert Scalapino; Philippe Schmitter; Fu Hu; Adam Przeworski; Francis Fukuyama; and Andrew Nathan.
Among the democratic leaders from third wave democracies who participated were former prime ministers Yegor Gaidar (Russia) and Mart Laar (Estonia); former minister of the presidency Edgardo Boeninger (Chile); José María Maravall, former minister of education and science (Spain); Wilmot James, executive director of the Institute for Democracy in South Africa; and Aleksander Smolar, chairman of the Stefan Batory Foundation (Poland).
Also appearing in this issue of the Journal is the paper on mainland China presented by Minxin [End Page 185] Pei. Revised versions of other conference papers will be published in future issues. The papers will ultimately be published in book form under the joint editorship of Hung-mao Tien and Yun-han Chu of INPR and Marc F. Plattner and Larry Diamond of the International Forum. INPR will also publish a report on the conference proceedings.
Conference Examines Options for Africa
Some 35 policy makers, scholars, and representatives of NGOs gathered in Washington, D.C., on June 9 for a symposium on “Elections and Conflict Resolution in Africa.” Organized by the United States Institute of Peace (USIP), the meeting highlighted lessons to be drawn for democratization and conflict management from the wave of post-Cold War political transitions in Africa.
Participants debated the utility of elections as a tool for resolving conflict, and discussed ways in which Africans can improve the processes leading up to elections as well as election events themselves. Also explored was the question of which electoral system will best serve the continent’s developing nations; the present issue of the Journal includes a debate by two of the conference presenters, Joel D. Barkan and Andrew Reynolds, on the merits of proportional representation versus majoritarian electoral systems.
With elections slated in more than 30 African states within the next five years, considerable attention was given to the appropriate role of the international community in facilitating democratic outcomes and promoting conflict resolution on the continent.
Papers presented at the conference are currently being prepared for publication in book form; the volume, which will be edited by Andrew Reynolds and Timothy Sisk, is scheduled to be issued by the USIP Press in 1996.
New Resource on Democracy Available
Congressional Quarterly Books has just issued The Encyclopedia of Democracy, a four-volume reference work tracing the evolution of democracy from ancient Greece to the present. Edited by Seymour Martin Lipset, the heavily illustrated work comprises more than four hundred original articles by some two hundred prominent scholars. Coverage includes specific countries, geographic regions, historical eras, prominent individuals, and philosophical concepts relating to democracy. For more information or to place an order, contact Congressional Quarterly Books, 1414 22nd St., NW, Washington, DC 20037; phone, 202-822-1475 or 1-800-638-1710; fax, 202-887-6706.
Ditchley Foundation Hosts Conference on Corruption
“Corruption in Democratic Societies: Patterns, Implications, Remedies” [End Page 186] was the focus of an international meeting sponsored by the Ditchley Foundation in...