Representation and leadership in post-communist political systems

Richard Rose, William Mishler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Ideally, a democratic system is representative and has effective leaders. But in postcommunist political systems it is an open question whether leadership and representation are mutually supportive or in conflict. Survey data from the New Democracies Barometer, used to analyse the priority that people in nine Central and East European countries give to representation in parliament and to strong leaders, allow a distinction to be made between representative democrats and leadership democrats, and to distinguish both from authoritarians who value strong leadership without parliament and those disaffected with both. A discriminant function analysis shows that political attitudes towards democracy and markets and towards order and economic security are most important in determining views of governance. National differences are indirectly significant, inasmuch as views of individuals about leadership vary with national context. Where there has been a history of repressive dictatorship, people are more likely to value representation and reject strong leadership.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)224-246
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of Communist Studies and Transition Politics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Development
  • Political Science and International Relations


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