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The lawless presidency: economic crisis and democratic accountability in Mexico, 1970-94

Philip, George (1998) The lawless presidency: economic crisis and democratic accountability in Mexico, 1970-94. Democratization, 5 (1). pp. 23-41. ISSN 1351-0347

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Identification Number: 10.1080/13510349808403546


The Mexican government has adopted policies of market-oriented reform since 1982 which have for the most part been praised by professional economists. Mexico even joined the Organisation of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in 1994. However the performance of the economy has been disappointing. Yet a failure to achieve any real per capita economic growth over an extended period is unusual among Latin American countries which have consistently pursued policies of market-oriented economic reform. A large part of the explanation has to do with the character of Mexico's political institutions, most notably a lack of democratic accountability. The unmistakable trend toward greater democracy since 1982 has so far been expressed principally in terms of greater honesty and competitiveness in the electoral arena. But there has been no significant reform of the executive branch of government, which has for many years been run on authoritarian principles. This makes it difficult for the Mexican government to control corruption, limit the economic consequences of political shocks and prevent the shifts in political power which occur at the end of each sexenio from destabilising the economy.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 1998 Taylor & Francis
Divisions: Government
Subjects: J Political Science > JL Political institutions (America except United States)
J Political Science > JC Political theory
Date Deposited: 24 Jan 2010 12:33
Last Modified: 15 May 2024 23:41

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