Theories of Change in Democratic Backsliding
Grant Title: Unwelcome Change: Understanding, Evaluating, and Extending Theories of Democratic
Grant Period: May 2014 – April 2015
Principal Investigators: Ellen Lust, Political Science, Yale University
David Waldner, Politics, University of Virginia
Professors Ellen Lust at Yale University and David Waldner at the University of Virginia are implementing the first phase of the Theories of Change project for USAID’s DRG Center. This phase—focused on democratic backsliding—will seek to identify and isolate a large variety of factors that contribute to democratic backsliding in polities worldwide. The PIs will compare and analyze these factors, looking for topical and regional groupings, and identify theories for how these factors can be most effectively influenced to stop or reverse democratic backsliding.
The final grant products will be two tools to support USAID Mission staff in designing interventions to prevent democratic backsliding:
- A white Paper that presents, organizes, and analyzes the factors that contribute to democratic backsliding.
- A Theory of Change Matrix that presents theories for how external actors can influence the factors that contribute to backsliding.