The Political Economy of Transitions: Comparative Experiences




The Political Economy of Transitions: Comparative Experiences

March 18, 2013

This discussion paper examines existing methods for measuring aspects of political transitions. The paper  canvasses and examines existing measurement tools that focus on some, but not all, relevant dimensions of transitions and, in many cases, require the use of proxies. The measurement challenge is exacerbated by the many existing tools that focus on consolidation of democracy rather than on the unique characteristics  of transition processes.  For  example,  vital  issues  such  as  transitional  justice, return of funds  stolen  by  principals  of deposed regimes, instituting measures of social justice, and security sector reform are important analytical categories that try to assess issues that are not readily captured by standard indicators of the 'business and economic growth' tools. 

This paper was intended to inform the session on governance assessments at the Conference “The Political Economy of Transitions – Analysis for Change”, jointly organized by the UNDP Oslo Governance Centre (OGC) and the Norwegian Peacebuilding Resource Centre (NOREF) on 8-9 November 2012.The purpose of the conference was to stimulate dialogue between practitioners,academics, and policy-makers on key issues related to recent and ongoing transitions. It was also to inform the policy-making and policy advice provided by civil society and international actors on the ground.