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Title: Democracy aid or autocracy aid? Unintended effects of democracy assistance in Morocco
Authors: Khakee, Anna
Keywords: Democratization -- International cooperation
Democracy -- Morocco
Democratization -- Morocco
Issue Date: 2017
Publisher: Routledge
Citation: Khakee, A. (2017). Democracy aid or autocracy aid? Unintended effects of democracy assistance in Morocco. The Journal of North African Studies, 22(2), 238-258.
Abstract: This article goes beyond examining how general economic and security interests of western states have led them to support stability over democratisation in Middle East and North African states, by exploring the contention that western powers may also, paradoxically, through their democracy assistance, have reinforced the stability of hybrid regimes. Using Morocco as a case study, it draws on empirical research strands which have so far developed separately and which, taken together, suggest that democracy assistance has contributed to processes which have (1) made political parties more efficient and professional while failing to make them more effective democratic actors; (2) made civil society actors more tightly tied to state power and more narrowly focussed on service provision or restricted policy goals; (3) led to a strengthening of state representatives over elected officials at the local level; and (4) obfuscated the royal family’s use of and implication in corruption through an a-political approach to corruptionbusting. The article concludes that the mechanisms linking democracy aid and hybrid regime strengthening in these areas of Moroccan political life are complex, and better understood in some cases (e.g. civil society/local democracy and anti-corruption) than in others (e.g. political parties).
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