Will China democratize? If so, how soon? Relying on classical modernization theory and observations of China’s extraordinary economic growth, many prominent scholars have recently predicted that China is destined for a “short march” to democracy over the next decade. This article problematizes such predictions. I replicate the prominent forecast model used by Henry Rowen and show that even such classical modernization models of democratic transitions actually do not predict democracy in China before 2030–35 at the earliest. I also survey major reasons to think that China’s march to democracy will be a very long march, not a short one.
Journal of Chinese Political Science – Springer Journals
Published: Apr 9, 2017
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