Learning Objectives

  • A democracy must limit the power of its executives to provide accountability. Which institutional choices best ensure accountability, and how?
  • How much power should a minority have in a democracy? How do different democracies seek to guarantee that minorities are protected from possible majority tyranny? Do some institutional choices seem to guarantee this better than others?
  • Do greater participation and representation of many voices in government result in less effective policymaking?
  • How can we explain why an institution that works well in one setting might not work as well in another?
  • What explains why particular democratic institutions arise in particular countries but not in others?