Nations in Transit
Nations in Transit 2014
Eurasia's Rupture with Democracy
Nations in Transit 2014—the 18th edition of Freedom House’s comprehensive report on post-communist democratic governance—highlights recent setbacks to democracy across Eurasia and the Balkans, as well as in Central Europe.
Russia served as the model and inspiration for policies that have led to an uninterrupted retreat from free institutions throughout Eurasia and in 2013 brought a new and alarming level of repression.
In Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan, and several other countries, civil society responded with remarkable resistance to repressive governance. The year also featured improved elections and peaceful transfers of power in Kosovo, Albania, and Georgia.
- Of the 29 countries assessed in 2013, 13 were rated as democracies, 6 as transitional regimes, and 10 as authoritarian regimes.
- As in every year for the past 10 years, the average democracy score declined in 2013, with 16 countries suffering downgrades, 5 improving, and 8 not registering any score change.
- Russia’s negative influence on the governance practices of its neighbors became more pronounced in 2013, as replicas of Russian laws restricting “homosexual propaganda” and foreign funding of NGOs appeared in several Eurasian countries.
- Corruption increased in Central and Eastern Europe in 2013, with half of the 10 assessed European Union (EU) member states receiving downgrades.
- The Balkans registered some positive developments during the year, including Croatia’s EU accession and a historic agreement between Kosovo and Serbia, but dysfunctional governments continued to drive down democracy scores in the region overall.
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