The April 2021 issue of Democracy and Autocracy features a symposium dedicated to the theme “Constraining Presidents” with scholars specializing in both American and comparative politics. Contributors include José Antonio Cheibub (Texas A&M University), Kenneth Lowande (University of Michigan), and Julia Azari (Marquette University). Anne Meng (University of Virginia) and Ken Opalo (Georgetown University) add to the discussion through an exchange of reviews of their recent books on political institutions in authoritarian contexts, Constraining Dictatorship: From Personalized Rule to Institutionalized Regimes (Meng, 2020) and Legislative Development in Africa: Politics and Postcolonial Legacies (Opalo, 2018). Rachel Beatty Riedl (Cornell University) then provides insightful commentary on the Meng-Opalo exchange. Allen Hicken (University of Michigan) serves as guest editor.
Most of this issue’s contributors participated in a WCED virtual roundtable focused on this topic on November 10, 2020. Video is available on YouTube.