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Political Transition in Myanmar: Prospects and Problems

Published on Jul 1, 2014in Asian Politics & Policy
· DOI :10.1111/aspp.12115
Damien Kingsbury13
Estimated H-index: 13
Abstract
Since 2011, Myanmar has been undergoing a political transition that, in keeping with the Myanmar government's own claims, has been hailed by many previously critical countries as the start of a process of democratization. Myanmar has become a substantially more liberal country, and in particular its economy has been increasingly liberalized, away from the tight restrictions of the past. However, Myanmar's economic liberalization primarily benefits its entrenched and usually military-dominated or linked elites, while its political liberalization may be just enough to satisfy an appearance of democratization without the army giving up real power. This article looks at Myanmar's process of political liberalization set against some of the literature on political transitions, and highlights some factors that could militate against extensive reform, much less democratization. It concludes by noting that while Myanmar's military has started to step back from direct political control, it still retains ultimate state authority. © 2014 Policy Studies Organization.
  • References (17)
  • Citations (8)
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References17
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#1Lee Jones (QMUL: Queen Mary University of London)H-Index: 17
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#1Roger Lee Huang (CityU: City University of Hong Kong)H-Index: 2
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#1Raymond Suttner (UNISA: University of South Africa)H-Index: 7
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#1Isabelle Desportes (EUR: Erasmus University Rotterdam)H-Index: 2
#2Hone Mandefro (University of Gondar)H-Index: 2
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#1Jessica Bennett (Deakin University)
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#1Alistair D. B. Cook (NTU: Nanyang Technological University)H-Index: 4
Over the past decade, Myanmar has undergone several changes in the way it is governed from a formalized military junta to a mixed civilian and military system. There remain, however, multiple challenges to the well-being of people in Myanmar, and human insecurity disproportionately affects ethnic nationalities and minority groups. This chapter identifies three significant challenges to achieving human-centered governance in Myanmar: (1) trust-building with the military to cede power; (2) buildin...
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#1Mathew Davies (ANU: Australian National University)H-Index: 6
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#1Wooyeal Paik (SKKU: Sungkyunkwan University)H-Index: 4
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