Leonardo Morlino

Hybrid regimes or regimes in transition?

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The growth of democratization and the relative development of associated research has, more recently, aroused great interest in the more specific theme of the spread of hybrid or 'transitional' regimes. This article will outline the quantitative terms of democratization; pinpoint the pertinent analytic dimensions, starting with definitions of the terms 'regime', 'authoritarianism' and 'democracy'; define what is a «hybrid regime»; propose a typology of hybrid regimes, and, in the last section, will try to answer the key question posed in the title, which, as will become clear, is closely bound up with the prospects for change in the nations that have such ambiguous forms of political organization and, more in general, with the spread of democratization. One of the main findings refers to ensure the existence of institutions more or less capable of performing their functions as well as to the potentially strong role of governments and international organizations in helping to build state institutions, prior even to establishing democracies.


  • hybrid regime
  • democracy
  • authoritarianism
  • transition
  • liberalization


Article first page

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