Lessons from around the World
Referring to the empirical exploration in the previous chapters, it is concluded in this chapter that real democracy – wherever it is practised with some level of success – is always hybrid democracy, resulting from a process of push and pull between competing models of democracy. Consensus democracy may be most prominent in some countries, and pendulum democracy in others, but this never occurs in an exclusive or uncontested way. A vital democracy, it is argued here, is a democracy that combines the elementary forms of democracy in a way that is both creative and contingent and, thus, manages to unite effectiveness with legitimacy: the core principles of good governance. A democratic hybrid is creative if it succeeds in making the most of the advantages of the combined models and in compensating their disadvantages as much as possible. It is contingent if the coexistence of models is sensitive to the situational and cultural context in which democracy must gain effectiveness and legitimacy.
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