Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department or Program

Political Science


Stephen Bloom


The breakup of the Soviet Union gave the 15 republics a unique chance to transform their states into democracies. Although more than 30 years later we are seeing very mixed results in the democratic transitions across the post-Soviet space. Despite overwhelming efforts from the scholars in this field to come up with comprehensive theories explaining the reasons behind such large variance in the degrees of democratization between the states, still, the discipline is quite far from providing us with a single firm answer to such crucial questions. This paper is therefore aiming to contribute to this debate through a qualitative analysis of the relative success of Georgia’s democratization efforts and the reasons behind such outcomes. Based on the results of the inquiry it is possible to firmly suggest that major periods of democratization were always preceded and/or accompanied by pro-market reforms and policies, while simultaneously the periods of democratic backsliding or authoritarianism were significantly more prevalent under the administrations, that either neglected the need for such changes or simply enacted anti-market policies. All of which is pointing toward the fact that pro-market reforms, that result in the weakening of the state power, are crucial for successful democratic transitions as such changes are dramatically reducing the possibility of abuse of power.