Strong Presidents for Weak States. How Weak State Capacity Fosters Vertically Concentrated Executives

Part of the Vergleichende Politikwissenschaft book series (VGPO)


The link between a strong state and democratic institutions is becoming a well-established finding. Despite mounting empirical evidence mapping the existence of such a connection, very few contributors have been able to propose a mechanism through which this dynamic operates, hence thwarting attempts to establish a causal direction. This chapter attempts to fill this gap by linking post-independence levels of state capacity with the strength of presidents, an institutional feature already hypothesized to have strong effects on democratization efforts. Using 26 post-communist countries over the period 1989-2009, I argue that state capacity, understood as ‘the institutional capacity of a central state, despotic or not, to penetrate its territories and logistically implement decisions’ (Mann 1993: 59) affects democratization processes by shaping the level of concentration of power in the hands of executives.


State Capacity Executive Power Constitutional Provision Infrastructural Power Democratic Consolidation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer Fachmedien Wiesbaden 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.PolitikwissenschaftUniversität SalzburgSalzburgAustria

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