Nations in Transit
Nations in Transit 2011
Nations in Transit is Freedom House’s comprehensive, comparative study of democratic development in 29 countries from Central Europe to Eurasia. Findings in the 2011 edition suggest that the authoritarian countries of the former Soviet Union have built governance systems that are resistant to reform and therefore increasingly vulnerable to unpredictable crises of the sort recently seen in the Middle East and North Africa. The ever-growing tenures of authoritarian leaders in the former Soviet Union have contributed to a number of looming governance problems. Without an opportunity for a peaceful rotation of power, citizens in the former Soviet Union are presented with the frustrating prospect of political stagnation for years to come. This year’s analysis also found challenges to democracy in Ukraine, which has been viewed as a key test case for reform in the region. Hungary experienced declines in four areas, including setbacks in national governance and independent media. In the Balkans, Croatia and Serbia made modest progress as part of their efforts toward EU accession, but five other countries suffered declines. In the former Soviet region, Moldova showed the biggest improvement, though there was also progress in Georgia and Kyrgyzstan.