GEM PhD School

Globalisation, Europe & Multilateralism

Erasmus Mundus Joint Doctorate

Academic Degrees & Titles

Associate Professor of Comparative Politics. Dr Doorenspleet is the Director of the Centre for Studies in Democratisation. She is also the Programme Director for the MA in Politics. She undertook a PhD in political science at Leiden University, the Netherlands, and received the “Jaarprijs Politicologie 2002” which is the yearly award of the Dutch Political Science Association for the best PhD dissertation in political science and international relations. After a postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard University (USA) during the academic year 2002-2003, she started a research project on democracy in divided countries, which was funded by the Dutch National Science Foundation.

Research Area(s)

Democratisation; comparative politics; quantitative and qualitative methods; public opinion in emerging and new democracies; democratic transitions and consolidation; explanations and effects of democratisation; political institutions in divided countries; accountable governance in Africa.

Specific Research Interest(s)

Her research interests are in democratic transitions and consolidation, conflict resolution, Africa, quantitative and qualitative methodology. She has published a number of book chapters and articles, e.g. in World Politics and the European Journal of Political Research. Her first book Democratic Transitions: Exploring the Structural Sources of the Fourth Wave (Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner, 2005) focused on theoretical and empirical explanations of recent transitions to democracy around the world. She is now working on a new book on the effects of democratization in comparative perspective.

Current Research Projects

'Democratic Dreams'. Book project on the effects of democratization in comparative perspective

'Implementing constitutional choices: enhancing accountable government on the African continent'. Participant in this international project. The Centre for Studies in Democratization is the ‘northern’ partner in this three-year (2007-2010) British Council-funded project. The lead partner in the ‘south’ is the School of Law of the University of Cape Town (South Africa), and the other partner is the School of Law in Dar-es-Salaam (Tanzania). My contribution to the project includes both research and teaching (e.g. on comparative methodology, April 2008, Cape Town) 

‘Deviant Democracies: Democratization Against All Odds’. Leader of this project , together with Dr. Petr Kopecky (University of Leiden, the Netherlands) and Prof. Dr. Cas Mudde (University of Antwerp, Belgium). Project includes a workshop with country experts (to be held in the Netherlands), writing and editing of papers on deviant cases, and editing of special issue for international journal on this topic


Dr Doorenspleet is the Programme Director for the MA in Politics.

Suggested Fields of Inquiry

Topics that lie in the topics of democratic transitions and consolidation, conflict resolution, Africa, quantitative and qualitative methodology or any of its intersections.

Overview of Publications

Single-Authored Books

Democratic Transitions: Exploring the Structural Sources during the Fourth Wave, Boulder: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2005

Recent refereed articles/chapters

‘Electoral Systems and Democratic Quality: Do Mixed Systems Combine the Best or the Worst of Both Worlds? An Explorative Quantitative Cross-national Study’ in Acta Politica, 40, 2005, pp. 28- 49

‘Citizen’s Support for Legislature and Democratic Consolidation: Comparative study with special focus on Mali’ in Salih, M. O. (ed.) African Parliaments, New York: Palgrave, 2005

‘Electoral Systems and Good Governance in Divided Countries’ in Ethnopolitics, 4 (4), 2005, pp. 1- 16

‘The Structural Context of Recent Transitions to Democracy’ in European Journal of Political Research, 43 (3), 2004, pp. 309-335

‘Political Parties, Party Systems and Democracy in Sub-Saharan Africa’, in: Salih, M. O. (ed.) African Political Parties: Evolution, Institutionalisation and Governance, London: Pinto, 2003

‘Development, class and democracy’ in Goran Hyden and Ole Elgstrom (eds.), Development and Democracy, London: Routledge, 2002

‘Reassessing the Three Waves of Democratization’ in World Politics, 52 (3), 2000, pp. 384-406

‘Political Democracy: A Cross-National Quantitative Analysis of Modernization and Dependency Theories’ in Acta Politica, 32 (4), 1997, pp. 349-374

Work in Progress

Book Project on the Effects of Democratization in Comparative Perspective

Working paper ‘Mixed Methods: the Limits of Combining Quantitative and Qualitative Research’ with Ellen Mastenbroek (University of Nijmegen)

Working paper ‘Is Consensus Democracy Indeed the Best form of Government?’ with Huib Pellikaan and Simon Otjes (University of Leiden)

Special Issue for International Journal on ‘Deviant Democracies’ with Petr Kopecky (University of Leiden) and Cas Mudde (University of Antwerp)