Book by Latin America Experts Explores Democratic Governance

January 05, 2010Elizabeth Rankin

cover of "Democratic Governance in Latin America"

Producing more effective governance is the greatest challenge facing most Latin American democracies today, say University of Notre Dame political scientists Scott Mainwaring and Rev. Timothy R. Scully, C.S.C., in a new book from Stanford University Press.

In Democratic Governance in Latin America, Mainwaring and Father Scully gather a renowned team of contributors to explore why some policies and some countries in Latin America have been more successful than others in meeting the challenge of governing both democratically and effectively.

Good democratic governance entails looking at the policy results of governance, not how democratic a regime is. In a book intended to illuminate policy debates as well as make an academic contribution, the editors make a point of enriching the debate with a wide range of voices.

Contributors to the wide-ranging, interdisciplinary project encompass not only well-known political scientists and economists, but six distinguished Latin American leaders with strong academic credentials, including Fernando Henrique Cardoso, the former president of Brazil; Alejandro Foxley, former finance minister and minister of foreign affairs in Chile; and José Miguel Insulza, the secretary general of the Organization of American States.

Other contributors include Notre Dame political scientist Daniel Brinks and a number of former visiting fellows at Notre Dame’s Kellogg Institute for International Studies, where Mainwaring serves as director and Brinks and Scully are faculty fellows.

The book originated in a conference held at the Kellogg Institute in October 2005 with funding from the Coca-Cola Company.

Contact: Scott Mainwaring, Eugene P. and Helen Conley Professor of Political Science and director, Kellogg Institute, 574-631-8530,

Originally published at on January 04, 2010.