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AIAS Fellows' Seminar: Svend-Erik Skaaning, AIAS Fellow

The Art of Measuring Democracy: The Varieties of Democracy Project in Comparative Perspective

Info about event


Monday 27 February 2017,  at 14:15 - 16:15


The AIAS Auditorium, Building 1632, Høegh-Guldbergs Gade 6B, 8000 Aarhus C


Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem) is a new approach to conceptualizing and measuring democracy. The project provides a multidimensional and disaggregated dataset that reflects the complexity of the concept of democracy as a system of rule that goes beyond the simple presence of multi-party elections. V-Dem distinguishes between seven high-level principles of democracy: electoral, liberal, participatory, deliberative, egalitarian, majoritarian and consensual. In order to capture detailed aspects of these conceptions of democracy, the data collection covers more than 350 indicators based on expert surveys and ‘in-house’ coding. The talk provides an introduction to the V-Dem project, compares it to extant attempts to measure democracy, and presents some preliminary findings based of the data.

Short bio

Svend-Erik Skaaning is a professor of Political Science at Aarhus University and co-principal investigator of the Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem) project. Currently he is an AIAS Jens Christian Skou Fellow at Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies. His research interests include the definition, measurement, and explanation of democracy and the rule of law and comparative methodology. He has published eight books and more than 40 research papers on these and related issues. Skaaning has been a visiting scholar at Stanford University, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Harvard University, and Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin. 

Svend-Erik Skaaning's project at AIAS

What is a Fellows' Seminar?

The AIAS Fellows' Seminar is a session of seminars held by the AIAS fellow or by other speakers proposed by the fellows. In each seminar, one fellow will present and discuss his/her current research and research project, closing off with a question and discussion session.

All seminars are held in English and open to the public. Registration to the seminar is not necessary.  Read more about the AIAS Fellows' Seminar here.