Home > Call for Papers, Conference > Philippine Political Science Association 2011

Philippine Political Science Association 2011

*2011 INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE*

*PHILIPPINE POLITICAL SCIENCE ASSOCIATION (PPSA)*

*29-30 APRIL 2011*

*VENUE: UNIVERSITY OF ST. LA SALLE, BACOLOD CITY*

*DEMOCRACY CONTESTED: PROGRESS, REVERSAL, DEFECTS, AND PROSPECTS*

*Call for Paper Presenters and Participants*

As the professional organization of political scientists in the
country, the Philippine Political Science Association (PPSA)
undertakes activities that are oriented towards furthering the
professional development of its members, promote the growth of the
discipline, and allow its members to engage other academics and even
policy and opinion makers in a discussion of critical issues in
various fora. One venue for professional updating, academic
interaction and dialogue among academics and practitioners is the
annual conference. From 1997, the annual PPSA conference has steadily
garnered the participation of local and foreign academics, especially
as the papers in the conferences have inquired into pressing issues
and contemporary political phenomena. The 2010 International
Conference promises to continue the trend of prior PPSA academic
gatherings, with around 150 academics, researchers and a few relevant
policy and opinion makers expected to attend the two-day event on
April 29-30, 2011, to be held at the University of St.La Salle with
the University of St. La Salle as local partner.

*CONFERENCE CONCEPT*

Democracy is arguably the most contested concept in political
science. Various meanings and definitions of democracy have so far
been offered, coming from different perspectives, hence producing
what are called adjectival democracies (e.g. elite democracy, frail
democracy, low intensity democracy) and labels to describe political
systems as “hybrid” (i.e., those with seemingly competitive elections
but with rules that prevent an escalation of opposition and allow
participation of select civil society organizations). Despite the
divergent definitions of the concept, however, there are far more
political systems that are classified as “democracies” at present
compared to the past. The recently released Human Development Report
notes that the number of “formal democracies” increased from fewer
than a third in the 1970s to three fifths by 2008.

The experiences and processes of democracy and democratization around
the world have likewise been wide-ranging and diverse over the past
two decades, in what has been referred to as the Third Wave. In the
region, the countries that have experienced a transition from
non-democratic systems include South Korea, Taiwan, Indonesia, and
the Philippines.

The Philippine experience has particularly been an interesting case.
As one of the first in Asia (?) to experience a political transition
in 1986, the post-EDSA 1 Philippine political experience has somehow
surfaced the complexities of democratization. While formal democratic
institutions were quickly re-established a year after the transition,
these institutions have faltered along the dimensions of
representativeness or even responsiveness, a couple of traditional
measures of democratic system performance. Other political
institutions remain feeble, from political parties to elections.
Positions of authority remain basically concentrated in the hands of
not even a couple of a hundred political families. And the system
remains periodically challenged by non-democratic elements, from
armed communist insurgents, separatist rebels, and worse, adventurous
factions of the establishment that has failed to heed the call to
simply go back to the barracks, the military.

The experiences of other countries in the region and the rest of the
world provide an even wider base for revisiting the contested concept
of democracy and the processes of democratization. By countries, we
do not refer to “late” democratizers alone but even to the so-called
more “mature democracies”, i.e., countries which have seen years of
governmental changes but whose fabled institutions have shown cracks
similar to those of “fledgling” democracies. Of these cracks, one has
drawn some degree of scholarly inquirythe quality of political
leaders. In the last two decades, the leaders that have been featured
prominently, either due to reforms instituted or merely because of
their persona, range from Italy’s Berlusconi, the United Kingdom’s
Blair, Japan’s Koizumi, Brazil’s Lula, Colombia’s Chavez, and
Thailand’s Thaksin.

In sum, the experiences of countries classified as democracies (and
even those that are hybrid but whose political systems are
“performing”) resurrect questions that have long been asked and which
the 2011 Philippine Political Science Association conference aims to
respond to. Some of these questions are– *What is democracy? What
qualifies a political system to be labeled as democratic? What
factors brought forth the transition to formal democracy among Third
Wave “democratizers”? What is the consequence or effect of the
transition pathway on the eventual successor political institutions?
Have the intended consequences of “engineered” institutions been
realized? What has been the role of civil society in furthering
democratization?

*CONFERENCE SUB-THEMES*

Among the sub-themes that the conference panels could address are the
following:

1. Choices and outcomes of institutional/constitutional design (e.g.
parliamentary versus presidential debate; concept of horizontal
accountability; devolution and the federalism proposal)
2. Civil society, social movements and democratization
3. Political leadership and democratic progress or reversal
4. Power shifts or power diffusion: democratization in world politics
5. Elections and political parties
6. New media and political change
7. Philippine culture and democracy
8. Civic (citizenship) education for democracy
9. Democratization and nation-building

*PAPER SUBMISSIONS*

Those interested in presenting papers or convening panels may contact
the following members of the Program Committee:

Ronald D. Holmes (ronald.holmes@gmail.com)
Maria Ela L. Atienza (ela_atienza@yahoo.com)
Ruth Lusterio-Rico (ruthlrico@gmail.com)

Paper abstracts should consist of a maximum of 500 words and must
include research question(s) and research method(s). Panel proposals
should also contain a panel description of not more than 500 words,
aside from the individual abstracts of the papers included in the
panel. Proposals will be peer reviewed.

Deadline for Panel and Paper Proposals with abstract: *February 28, 2011*

Deadline for Paper Submissions: *March 31, 2011*

*ELIGIBILITY*

Scholars, activists and other public intellectuals from the
Philippines, Asia, and elsewhere are encouraged to participate in the
conference.

*CONFERENCE FEE*

All participants including paper presenters and role players are
required to pay the conference fee of *PhP 3,500 *. An early bird
rate of *PhP 3,000 *is available for all those who will register on
or before March 31, 2011.

Graduate students can avail of the discounted rate of *PhP 2,000
*upon presentation of proof enrolment and school identification.

*FURTHER INQUIRIES*

For inquiries, please contact:

Ruth Lusterio-Rico
Department of Political Science, UP Diliman, Quezon City
Telephone: (632) 920-7246; 434-6711
Telefax: (632) 920-7246
E-mail: ruthlrico@gmail.com

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