Democracy Lab Weekly Brief, July 11, 2016

Democracy Lab Weekly Brief, July 11, 2016

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In Democracy Lab’s twelfth anti-corruption case study, Maya Gainer tells the story of how Kenya cleaned up its courts. (Check out the rest of the series, republished by our friends at the Legatum Institute.)

Jeffrey Smith takes Washington to task for cozying up to the unsavory regime in Djibouti just to keep its African drone base.

Rick Rowden analyzes recent signs that the IMF may be reconsidering some of the neoliberal economic policies it has pursued for decades.

Nicholas Borroz and Hunter Marston push back against the impression that democracy in Southeast Asia is in a downward spiral.

And now for this week’s recommended reads: 

SyriaUntold is launching a new project, “Cities in Revolution,” which tells the story of the Syrian uprising in five cities through stories, photographs, videos, and other materials. In Politico Magazine, Janine Di Giovanni bemoans the failure of American presidential candidates to propose any solutions for ending the war in Syria.

Michael Bratton and Eldred Masunungure write for Foreign Affairs about what Zimbabweans can expect from the impending post-Mugabe era.

The Washington Post’s Jackson Diehl slams the Obama administration for its silence about Egypt’s detention of a U.S. citizen. Also in the Post, Michael Birnbaum reports on how Poland’s public broadcaster misled its audience about President Obama’s criticism of the country’s democracy.

At OpenDemocracy, a group of prominent Nicaraguans publish an open letter expressing concern about the fairness of upcoming elections.

In the New York Times Magazine, Maggie Jones tells the story of a Guatemalan forensic anthropologist who is helping secure justice for the victims of the country’s civil war.

In the “Global Anticorruption Blog,” Matthew Stephenson announces the publication of a new set of case studies about special anti-corruption courts in Indonesia, the Philippines, Slovakia, and Uganda.

In a paper for the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Sarah Chayes finds common features in the corrupt networks of three Eurasian countries — Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan, and Moldova.

And finally, Foreign Policy’s James Traub asks whether the democratic West is giving up on liberal democracy.

In the photo, opposition Movement for Democratic Change supporters demonstrate against the Zimbabwean government on May 28 in Bulawayo.

Photo credit: ZINYANGE AUNTONY/AFP/Getty Images