Three decades since the beginning of democratization processes, the Western Balkan countries have built a democratic façade by holding elections, by promulgating legal acts guaranteeing freedom of expression, or by constitutionally declaring a strict system of checks and balances. In reality, however, political elites rely on informal structures, clientelism, and control of the media to undermine democracy. Given that formal democratic freedoms are effective only to the extent that political elites are bound by the effective rule of law, the core argument of the study is that the structural weaknesses of democratic institutions are purposefully exploited by domestic regimes, which are able to misuse these fragile institutions to their advantage. Read more here.
Source: Taylor & Francis Online