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Voting and Democratic Citizenship in Africa

Michael Bratton 1 Jan 2013
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How do individual Africans view competitive elections? How do they behave at election time? What are the implications of new forms of popular participation for citizenship and democracy? Drawing on a decade of research from the cross-national Afrobarometer project, the authors of this seminal collection explore the emerging role of mass politics in Africa’s fledgling democracies.

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About the author

Michael Bratton is University Distinguished Professor of political science and African studies at Michigan State University. He also serves as senior adviser to the Afrobarometer.


  • Voting and Democratic Citizenship in Africa: An Overview—M. Bratton
  • Where Do Elections Lead in Africa?—M. Bratton

Vote choice

  • Does Ethnicity Determine Support for the Governing Party?—P. Norris and R. Mattes
  • Political Competition and Ethnic Identification in Africa—B. Eifert, E. Miguel, and D. Posner
  • Voting Intentions in Africa: Ethnic, Economic, or Partisan?—M. Bratton, R. Bhavnani, and T. Chen

Vote Buying

  • Vote Buying and Electoral Turnout in Kenya—E. Kramon
  • Vote Buying and Violence in Nigerian Election Campaigns—M. Bratton
  • Museveni and the 2011 Ugandan Election: Did the Money Matter?—J. Conroy-Krutz and C. Logan

Implications for citizenship

Uncritical Citizenship: Mozambicans in Comparative Perspective—R. Mattes and C. Shenga.
How Electoral Systems Promote Public Trust: Accountability or Representation?—W. Cho.
Voters But Not Yet Citizens: The Weak Demand for Vertical Accountability—M. Bratton and C. Logan

Implications for Democracy

  • Critical Citizens and Submissive Subjects: Election Losers and Winners in Africa—D. Moehler
  • Does the Quality of Elections Affect the Consolidation of Democracy?—A. Greenberg and R. Mattes
  • Do Free Elections Foster Capable Governments?—M. Bratton


  • Voting and Democratic Citizenship in Africa: Where Next?—M. Bratton


Michael Bratton

Michael is a co-founder and board member at Afrobarometer