Authoritarian Turn

Authoritarian practices are not only used in non-democratic regimes. They can increasingly be found also in formally democratic states, as the examples of shrinking civic space, populism, and democratic backsliding show. Learn more about the GIGA‘s research and knowledge transfer on the topic.


  • Zenith Magazin | Article | 23/11/2021

    Militärcoup im Sudan: Warum das Militär im Sudan so viel Macht hat

    Hager Ali

    Doctoral Researcher

    In Brief | 12/11/2021

    Call for Papers: International Conference "Iraq Twenty Years After the US Invasion: Memory Politics, Governance and Protests"

    We invite paper abstracts for an international conference that sheds new light on the main factors shaping Iraqi politics and society since the US invasion of 2003. Please send your application until 20 January 2022. The event will take place in Hamburg, 29–31 March 2023.

    Cooperation Event | 14/04/2021 - 01/07/2021

    10 Years After the Arab Spring

    In this event series we look back on the events of the Arab Spring in its broader regional and international context. This event series started on 15 April and ended on 1 July 2021. Video of the events available.

    Research Project | 01/07/2019 - 30/06/2023

    Justifying Repression in Authoritarian Regimes of the Arab World: Official Framing and Target Audiences

    This project offers a new perspective on how repression can sustain authoritarianism. It focuses on Tunesia and Morocco – two countries with divergent trajectories during the Arab uprisings. Bridging framing and autocracy research, the project develops a new concept of justifications of repression. It shows how their application in different branches of government differs, why certain types of justifications are chosen, and what effect they have.
    DFG, 2019-2023

    Dr. Maria Josua

    Research Fellow / Speaker Research Team

    Research Project | 01/02/2018 - 31/01/2021

    Do Diasporas Contribute to the Persistence of Authoritarian Rule? Responses of Eritrean Citizens Abroad to Transnational Governance

    Globalization has witnessed an increase in the transnationalization of politics - a severely understudied subject in political science. The project’s main research question is if diasporas can stabilize authoritarian regimes. It explores diaspora responses to efforts of home regimes to exploit and control its citizens abroad. It examines how the political systems of host states influence political affiliations regarding homeland politics by comparing the transnational relations of Eritrean diaspora communities residing in five different countries.
    DFG, 2018-2021

    Dr. Nicole Hirt

    Research Fellow

    Mediterranean Politics | Taylor and Francis Ltd. | Forthcoming

    Special Issue: MENA Political Science Research a Decade after the Arab Uprisings: Facing the Facts on Tremulous Ground

    This special issue covers topics such as critical juncture for the MENA research fields, revisiting the Area Studies Controversy in light of the Arab uprisings and changes that political science research in MENA has yielded.

    Dr. André Bank

    Senior Research Fellow

    Dr. Jan Busse

    GIGA Focus Global | 2/2021

    Executive Personalisation in the Time of COVID-19

    The COVID-19 pandemic is revealing its severe implications not just for health systems worldwide. One striking political consequence has been renewed power concentration in the executive. There are signs of a global increase in this executive personalisation having occurred over the last 12 months.

    GIGA NDR Series "Crossing Borders" | 16/11/2020

    Uprising Against Those in Power – Upheaval in the Middle East

    People in the Middle East have been demonstrating for months now. Anger is targeted at their governments, who often react very harshly to these protests. Are we witnessing historic upheaval? Natalie Amiri (ARD Iran expert), Björn Blaschke (Head of the ARD Radio Studio in Cairo), Dr. André Bank (Senior Research Fellow and Middle East expert at the GIGA), and moderator Julia-Niharika Sen (NDR foreign affairs broadcast “Weltbilder”) will discuss this issue.

    Prof. Dr. Bert Hoffmann

    Lead Research Fellow / Head GIGA Berlin Office Editor GIGA Focus Latin America

    bert.hoffmann@giga-hamburg.de

    Dr. David Kuehn

    Senior Research Fellow / Coordinator GIGA Forum

    david.kuehn@giga-hamburg.de

    Cooperation Event | 14/04/2021 - 01/07/2021

    10 Years After the Arab Spring

    In this event series we look back on the events of the Arab Spring in its broader regional and international context. This event series started on 15 April and ended on 1 July 2021. Video of the events available.

    GIGA NDR Series "Crossing Borders" | 16/11/2020

    Uprising Against Those in Power – Upheaval in the Middle East

    People in the Middle East have been demonstrating for months now. Anger is targeted at their governments, who often react very harshly to these protests. Are we witnessing historic upheaval? Natalie Amiri (ARD Iran expert), Björn Blaschke (Head of the ARD Radio Studio in Cairo), Dr. André Bank (Senior Research Fellow and Middle East expert at the GIGA), and moderator Julia-Niharika Sen (NDR foreign affairs broadcast “Weltbilder”) will discuss this issue.

    Cooperation Event | 26/02/2020

    The Political Dynamics and Challenges of Mass Protesting: A Global Perspective

    In the last few years civic activism has intensified across the globe. It is also changing shape as new forms of civil society activity proliferate. The emerging activism is varied in nature, and complex in its implications for global democracy. It involves large-scale protest, but also less contentious community mobilisation – and is taking on multiple ideological agendas. This joint GIGA/Carnegie Foundation event will discuss the innovative forms of participation emerging in democratic and authoritarian contexts.

    WDR aktuell, Tickr News | Expert Comment / Guest Contribution | 10/01/2022

    Medieninszenierungen der Taliban in Afghanistan

    Hager Ali

    Doctoral Researcher

    Tagesanzeiger | Article | 13/12/2021

    Wie viel Diktatur steckt in Katar?

    Prof. Dr. Eckart Woertz

    Director of the GIGA Institute for Middle East Studies

    DW | Quote | 07/12/2021

    Saudi Arabia fights to rehabilitate its image after Khashoggi murder

    Prof. Dr. Eckart Woertz

    Director of the GIGA Institute for Middle East Studies

    01/12/2021

    How Autocrats Legitimize Repression: Empirical insights from the Maghreb

    Conference 01/12/2021

    15/11/2021

    COVID-19 and Executive Personalization in Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, Latin America and the MENA Region

    Conference 15/11/2021

    28/10/2021

    The World between American Geopolitics and Chinese Geoeconomics

    GLOBSEC Brussels Brussels: 28/10/2021

    Presenting a chapter I wrote on this topic for Globsec, on China and the Broader Black Sea Region

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