Democracy and Development

Main content

The research group is concerned with the study of institutional developments and policy developments in regimes that have recently changed from authoritarianism towards a more democratic regime. We seek to understand how politics is shaped in the interaction between political institutions, processes and political actors. The geographic focus varies, but with a concentration on countries that have developed multiparty systems and democratic institutions in recent years in Latin American, East and Central Europe, Sub-Saharan Africa and parts of Asia. We are also concerned with understanding how concepts and methodologies for the study of democratization as they have been developed in the study of established democracies can be applied to different settings. Thus, comparisons with and studies of such processes in established democracies are also of interest to this group.

Research projects:

Breaking BAD: Understanding the Backlash Against Democracy in Africa

Money Talks – Gendered Electoral Financing

Politics After War



Gyda Sindre

Gyda Sindre launches new research network on post-conflict studies

Researcher and Marie Curie Fellow at the Department of Comparative Politics and University of Cambridge, Gyda Sindre, has launched an ambitious research network and website which will bring thorough attention to several themes connected to post-conflict studies.

Research project
Bergen-based researchers connected to the research project.

Money power and gender balance in politics

Sampol-professor Ragnhild Louise Muriaas’ new research project “Money Talks” will research how financial means affect women's political representation.

Research project
Breaking BAD meeting

Breaking Bad at Sampol

A new research project headed by Prof. Lise Rakner, will research whether dictators are abusing formal institutions in a Backlash Against Democracy (BAD) in Africa, or whether formal institutions increasingly restrain the discretionary power of more-or-less democratic politicians.

Phd candidate

With democracy in danger, can activists fight back? Scholar studies civil society, regional resistance in Africa

SAMPOL’s newest graduate researcher is intrigued by “the many-headed creature that is civil society.”

New Pd.D Svein-Erik Helle

Want to debate African politics?

New post-doc tackles (mis)rule in Africa with sharp tongue, sharper ideas