The V-Dem Institute at Sweden’s University of Gothenburg has come out with its annual democracy report. The study is titled ‘Democracy Report 2022: Autocratisation Changing Nature?’
- 1 Key-Points of Democracy Report 2022
- 2 What is Democracy?
Key-Points of Democracy Report 2022
The report classifies countries into four regime types based on their score in the Liberal Democratic Index (LDI): Liberal Democracy, Electoral Democracy, Electoral Autocracy, and Closed Autocracy.
It classifies India as an electoral autocracy ranking it 93rd on the LDI, out of 179 countries.
The level of democracy enjoyed by the average global citizen in 2021 is down to 1989 levels, with the democratic gains of the post-Cold War period eroding rapidly in the last few years.
More than twice as many countries (32) are undergoing automatization as are witnessing democratization (15).
Noting that India is one of the top ten ‘autocratisers’ in the world, the V-Dem (Varieties of Democracy) report classifies India as an autocracy (‘electoral autocracy’) rather than a democracy, ranking it 93rd on the liberal democracy index, out of 179 countries.
One of the biggest drivers of automatization is “toxic polarisation”, a dominant trend in 40 countries, as opposed to 5 countries that showed rising polarisation in 2011.
What is Democracy?
Democracy is a type of government that allows citizens to vote on important issues. The word democracy comes from Greek words meaning “people” and “rule of government.” It is often called “rule by the majority.”
In a democracy, people elect representatives to make decisions about how their country or state will be run. But those representatives must act in the interests of the people who elected them. They must listen to their voters and work for them.
The idea of democracy started with the ancient Greeks. They were some of the first people in recorded history to hold elections and let ordinary citizens vote on laws and issues.
What does it mean to be a citizen of a democracy?
The word “democracy” means “government by the people,” or as Abraham Lincoln defined it, “government of the people, by the people, for the people.” Being a citizen of democracy means having a voice in what that government does. For example, in India, citizens elect representatives to their state legislature.
In the early days of democracy, there was a very narrow understanding of citizenship. It was linked to being able to vote, but also have certain property rights, as well as often being associated with being male and white. But if you look at citizenship today, it’s much more complex. It includes the right to vote but also includes social rights like access to education, health care, or pensions. It also includes civil rights like freedom of speech and religion. And it includes political liberties like the ability to run for office or serve on a jury.
Why does representation matter in a democracy?
A democracy is a government wherein the people directly or indirectly rule and participate in policymaking. It is based on the principle that sovereignty lies in a nation’s people, who are entitled to choose their representatives through free and fair elections.
The people usually choose who will represent them in parliament. In every democratic country, it is important for the representatives of the people to reflect the population because representation matters in a democracy.
Representation matters because it brings more perspectives and ideas to the table during decision-making. If a representative only represents one side of an issue, he or she may not be able to make decisions that can benefit everyone. However, if all sides of an issue are represented, it is possible for all voices to be heard when decisions are being made.
In addition, representation matters because it helps a representative connect with his or her constituents on a personal level. When representatives can relate to the citizens they represent, they can better understand what their needs are and what is important to them. This enables them to create policies that will benefit their constituents and make decisions that will resonate with them as well.
Why are checks and balances important in a democracy?
Checks and balances are important in a democracy because they prevent any one branch of government from having too much power. Each branch acts as a check on the other two branches.
In the United States, Congress is the legislative body, meaning it creates laws. The president is part of the executive branch, meaning he enforces laws. The Supreme Court is part of the judicial branch, meaning it interprets laws. All three branches can check each other to keep one from becoming too powerful.
Checks and balances are important for limiting the power and keeping it equal between each branch of government. If there was no check or balance system, then one branch could become too powerful, thus destroying democracy.
How do we ensure the rule of law in a democracy?
The rule of law — that no one is above the law, which is expected to have been made without bias and in accordance with the constitution — is indeed what makes a democracy. It’s also what ensures that people will get along, and stay relatively safe, in any society.
However, we need to keep in mind that the rule of law itself will not protect against all possible harms a person may suffer. It’s an imperfect system, and there are many ways in which it can be manipulated or abused.
India become very powerful as a nation because we’ve managed to find an effective balance between personal liberty and security for everyone. We’ve done this primarily by putting checks on each other’s power, and by ensuring that no one person or group is able to gain too much power over others.
How do we protect individual rights in a democracy?
It is the responsibility of the government to protect individual rights in a democracy, and it is important that they do so. However, sometimes they don’t. In those cases, citizens have to stand up for their own rights.
Government corruption can make it difficult to protect individual rights in a democracy, but it is important that people work to ensure that their government does what it is supposed to do.