Apr 25, 2014

Sponsor: Forum

“Democratization and Authoritarianism in the Arab World”

a discussion celebrating the publication of Democratization and Authoritarianism in the Arab World, a Journal of Democracy book edited by Larry Diamond and Marc F. Plattner, published by the Johns Hopkins University Press

Sponsored by The International Forum for Democratic Studies at the National Endowment for Democracy


  • Daniel Brumberg, Georgetown University
  • Hillel Fradkin, Hudson Institute
  • Tarek Masoud, Harvard University

with introductory remarks by

moderated by

Friday, April 25, 2014
12:00 p.m.–2:00 p.m.

National Endowment for Democracy
1025 F. Street, N.W., Suite 800, Washington, D.C.

Watch CSPAN2 BookTV coverage of the event. ::VISIT

About the Event

Democratization and Authoritarianism in the Arab WorldBeginning in December 2010, a series of uprisings swept the Arab world, toppling four longtime authoritarian leaders and creating an apparent political opening in a region long impervious to the “third wave” of democratization. Despite the initial euphoria, the legacies of authoritarianism—polarized societies, politicized militaries, state-centric economies, and pervasive clientelism—have proven stubborn obstacles to the fashioning of new political and social contracts. Meanwhile, the strong electoral performance of political Islamists and the ensuing backlash in Egypt have rekindled arguments about the compatibility of democracy and political Islam. Even though progress toward democracy has been halting at best, the region’s political environment today bears little resemblance to what it was before the uprising.

Contributors Daniel Brumberg, Hillel Fradkin, and Tarek Masoud discussed these issues and the future of democracy in the region. The event also celebrated the book’s publication, which can be purchased here from Amazon.

Read the Journal of Democracy articles discussed during the event and find other related materials via the Forum's Bit.ly Bundle on Democratization and Authoritarianism in the Arab World.

VIDEO: Watch Marc F. Plattner discuss the book in an interview with the Johns Hopkins University Press.

About the Speakers

Daniel Brumberg is an associate professor of government and co-director of the M.A. in Democracy and Governance Studies at Georgetown University. In addition to teaching at Georgetown University, Brumberg serves as a special adviser for the United States Institute of Peace's Muslim World Initiative, where he focuses on democratization and political reform in the Middle East and wider Islamic world.

Hillel Fradkin is a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute, where he directs its Center on Islam, Democracy and the Future of the Muslim World. He is founder and co-editor (with Husain Haqqani, Eric Brown, and Hassan Mneimneh) of the Center's Current Trends in Islamist Ideology, the leading journal on contemporary Islamism (sometimes known as militant or radical Islam). He is also general editor of Hudson's monograph series on contemporary Islam and Islamism.

Tarek Masoud is an associate professor of public policy at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, where he teaches courses on comparative political institutions, democratization, and Middle Eastern politics. He is the author of Counting Islam: Religion, Class, and Elections in Egypt (Cambridge University Press, 2014), and is the co-editor of Problems and Methods in the Study of Politics (Cambridge, 2004) and Order, Conflict, and Violence (Cambridge, 2008). His articles and reviews have appeared in the Journal of Democracy, Middle Eastern Law and Governance, Foreign Policy, and other publications.

Larry Diamond (moderator) is a senior fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution and Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, where he directs the Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law (CDDRL). At CDDRL, he is also one of the principal investigators in the programs on Arab Reform and Democracy and on Liberation Technology. He is also founding co-editor of the Journal of Democracy and co-chair of the International Forum for Democratic Studies’ Research Council.