A critical look at the theories put forth by Lipset about the relationship between economic development and democracy. Divides Lipset’s theories into two:
* Endogenous: Democracies may be more likely to emerge as countries develop economically (This is a ‘modernization’ theory – democratization is the end of a process)
* Exogenous: Democracies may be established independently of economic development but may be more likely to survive in developed countries.
The endogenous version of the theory doesn’t stand up to scrutiny, but the exogenous version does – “Once democracy is established, the more well-to-do a nation, the more likely that it will survive. There are no grounds to believe that economic development breeds democracies – in turn, once established, democracies are likely to die in poor countries and certain to survive in wealthy ones. Furthermore, rapid growth is not destabilizing for democracies – what is destabilizing is economic crisis. Old theories of the origins of democracy were deterministic – O’Donnell and Schmitter moved away from that and discussed actors and strategies, this is the kind of approach that Przeworski and Limongi find support in the data for.