“Why ethnic politics can act as a check on democratic backsliding”, Jan Rovny (Sciences Po CEE, France)

The presence of politically organised minority groups is often viewed as a source of instability or conflict within a democracy. Yet in the countries of central and eastern Europe, democratic backsliding is more common in states that lack meaningful ethnic mobilisation. Drawing on new research, Jan Rovny explains that far from undermining democracy, the presence of mobilised minority groups can act as a bulwark against backsliding because these groups have a stake in pursuing liberal political arrangements that limit the power of the majority.

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