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Democracy that Delivers: Unlocking the Potential of Transition

This publication contains the materials from an international conference, “Democracy that Delivers”, held on May 21, 2008, in Sofia.

The construction of democracy has never been an easy undertaking. The constant trade-offs between openness and security, oversight and efficiency, between pluralism and the need for consensus on strategic reforms make sure that democracy is never taken for granted. Its advancement becomes all the more difficult when– in times of transition from repressive regimes – it is associated with great expectations that have to be met within short periods of time. The massive transformation from authoritarian regimes to open access societies that was prompted by the fall of communism required the unbundling of the concept of democracy. Reforms had to be sequenced, the provisions of public goods prioritized, the need for various institutions demonstrated. Post-communist transition became a giant laboratory for the engineering of democratic governance.

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