Democracy Promotion and Pluralism
Publication Date: November 2018
How can attention to pluralism complement existing democracy promotion practices? Usually, democracy promoters are concerned first and foremost with establishing stability in democratic institutions. As a result, forms of diversity that could translate into political mobilization (such as ethnic or religious identities) are often discouraged. Unfortunately, building stable institutions does not guarantee that governance practices will overcome societal division, and governments can very easily slide back into authoritarianism in order to maintain control. Incorporating pluralism into democracy promotion goes beyond building effective institutions and requires building democratic societies. New inclusionary cultural narratives, norms and attitudes are crucial to long-term stability in new democracies.