CONTACT: MARY GERAGHTY KENYON
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0011; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: April 24, 2001
Barkan wins $51,000 fellowship to continue research on African governments
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Joel D. Barkan, a professor of political science in the
University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts, has been awarded a $51,000, nine-month
residential fellowship from the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
in Washington, DC. Barkan will be a senior fellow at the Wilson Center from
Sept., 2001-May, 2002 during which time he will continue his research on early
elections in transitional polities.
This research project examines the impact of early elections in more than
40 countries in the midst of transitions from authoritarian to democratic
rule and in war-torn societies seeking to reestablish their governments after
periods of civil war.
For polities in the midst of transition from authoritarian to democratic
rule, the holding of "free and fair" elections is regarded as the
first step toward the realization of "electoral" or "procedural
democracy." For polities emerging from a breakdown of the political process,
first elections are considered a key step toward the reconstitution of the
state and the rebuilding of war-torn societies. Countries that send international
peacekeepers into post-conflict societies generally view the successful holding
of elections as an indication that the work of the peacekeepers is completed.
Barkan's research is an outgrowth of his involvement in several early elections
in Africa as an advisor to the U.S. Agency for International Development and
as an international observer of such elections in Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania
The fellowship will extend Barkan's stay in Washington, where he has been
a senior consultant on governance issues at the World Bank since January 2001,
and intermittently since 1998. Prior to his current World Bank assignment,
he was a senior fellow at the U.S. Institute of Peace and at the National
Endowment for Democracy, also in Washington.