Skip to main content

Democracy and Debate

What Do You Mean America is Not the Best Country in the World?

This video explores the ways that quantitative social scientists and specialists in international and comparative politics use a variety of indexes -- such as Polity IV and Freedom House -- to measure and rank democratic societies across the globe. Robert Franzese, Professor of Political Science and Director of LSA’s Program in International and Comparative Studies, is featured in an interview by Democracy & Debate host Angela Dillard that also touches on the recent “downgrading” of American democracy in one of these widely used indexes. What does it mean to regard our democratic society as “flawed” when compared to others? The interview ends with Dr. Franzese detailing some of the ways that we might use this comparative perspective on American democracy to promote reforms as well as some of the issues with which we ought to be most concerned for the future.

Additional Resources: