||The cases of successful breakthrough examined in this study are the Soviet Union in 1991 and Russia in 1993, Poland in 1989, Serbia in 2000, Ukraine in 2004, Indonesia by 1999, Chile in 1988, and South Africa by 1996. Cases of failed and then ultimately successful democratic transition are Ghana by 2000, Mexico by 2000, South Korea by 1987, and Turkey by 1983. Finally, the cases of failed transition examined are Algeria in 1991, Iran in 1979, China in 1989, and Azerbaijan in 2005.
Ten domestic influences were found to be common to each of the successful cases of democratic breakthrough examined in this study, including incremental reform victories preceding breakthrough attempts, the presence of coherent oppositions, economic distress and poor service delivery, rising expectations and increasing levels of literacy and education, mass mobilization, a growing influence of civic actors, preservation of independent information flows, reform offers by regimes that only embolden oppositions, robust “get out the vote” and “protect the vote” efforts, and breakthroughs that are largely free from violence.
Seven types of external influence were identified as influential, including passive factors, such as economic shocks, diffusion, and the influence of norms and ideas; and active factors, such as direct democracy aid, diplomatic influence, economic influence, and reputational influence.
Even though all of these domestic factors and most of the external ones featured in every successful case of breakthrough, the impact of these precipitants varied in influence from case to case.