Social media platforms like Facebook and WhatsApp are becoming primary channels of political engagement in Latin America. Throughout the region’s democracies, large majorities of adults now report receiving or sharing political information on social networks. Ten years ago, only a tenth did so. The dramatic growth in social media’s political relevance cannot be overemphasized. … [Read more...] about Is Social Media Remaking Latin American Elections?
As if we couldn't think for ourselves when it comes to pouring hot liquids down our throats, the warnings about hot tea and coffee are ubiquitous. “Caution Handle with Care I’m Hot,” says one cup. "Caution Contents Hot," says another, with variations on the theme repeated in thousands of restaurants and cafes around the world. Businesses, it seems, don't trust us to be careful … [Read more...] about When Too Much Choice Distorts Electoral Results
A Latin American president faces a steep economic downturn. She introduces fiscal austerity measures, perhaps a tax hike, to try to contain the damage. Mass protests erupt, police clash with demonstrators, and the political mood grows darker by the day. Can the president and her party survive? The short answer is usually no. In a recent study, Martín Ardanaz, Mark Hallerberg … [Read more...] about When Tax Hikes Doom Governments at the Polls
By Arjun Chowdhury and Cesi Cruz What links Latin American nations to failed states like Syria and the Democratic Republic of Congo? By most objective measures, not much. Syria is the epitome of chaos, suffering from a civil war that has killed hundreds of thousands and displaced or exiled millions more. Ethnic, religious and political conflict similarly takes a huge human … [Read more...] about Latin America and the Risk of State Failure
By Mauricio Báez and Katherine Poole For 71 years, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) held sway over virtually every aspect of Mexican life. It was, in the words of writer and Nobel Laureate Mario Vargas Llosa, "the perfect dictatorship.” But Mexico has undergone a dramatic evolution. Since 2000, the PRI has alternated in power with the right wing National Action … [Read more...] about Mexico: Growth of a Multi-Party System