Number of countries veering towards authoritarianism on rise: report

What is the News?

The Global State of Democracy Report 2021 has been released by the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance.

About Global State of Democracy Report 2021 

Aim: To review the state of democracy around the world over the course of 2020 and 2021, with democratic trends since 2015 used as contextual reference. 

Types of Regimes: The reports refer to three main regime types: Democracies (which includes those backsliding), Hybrid and Authoritarian regimes.

Hybrid and authoritarian regimes are both classified as non-democratic. 

Note: Backsliding democracies are those that have experienced gradual but significant weakening of Checks on Government and Civil Liberties, such as Freedom of Expression and Freedom of Association and Assembly over time. 
What are the key findings of the report?

The number of countries moving towards authoritarianism in 2020 was higher than that of countries going towards democracy.

More countries than ever before are suffering from “democratic erosion” (decline in democratic quality). Around 70% of the global population now live either in non-democratic regimes or in democratically backsliding countries.

Democratically elected Governments, including established democracies, are increasingly adopting authoritarian tactics. This democratic backsliding has often enjoyed significant popular support

Countries such as India and Brazil have been classified as some of the most worrying examples of Backsliding democracies. India has remained in the category of a mid-level performing democracy since 2000.

The United States was added to the list of “backsliding” democracies for the first time, on account of the visible deterioration of its democratic credentials.

The year 2020 was the worst on record, in terms of the number of countries affected by deepening autocratisation.

Many democracies had proved to be resilient to the pandemic. Countries around the world learned to hold elections in exceedingly difficult conditions

What is the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance(IDEA)?

IDEA is an intergovernmental organization that supports sustainable democracy worldwide. 

In 2003, IDEA was granted United Nations Observer Status.

The organization is currently chaired by Australia and includes India as a member-state.

Headquarters: Stockholm, Sweden

Source:  This post is based on the article Number of countries veering towards authoritarianism on rise: report published in The Hindu on 23rd November 2021.

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