Dr Felix Wiebrecht

Lecturer in Politics Politics


Institutions in Authoritarian Regimes

Traditionally characterized as nothing but 'rubberstamps', this line of my work explores where, when, and why institutions play a meaningful role in authoritarian regimes and how they change over time. Here, I primarily focus on parliaments in nondemocracies but also look at the role of political parties. Most of this work is comparative in nature but I have also done work on the role of institutions in the Chinese political system specifically.

Elites in Nondemocracies

Who are the elites in authoritarian regimes? Why do dictators manage their elites differently, and what are the consequences of different elite compositions? This is the line of work that I currently pursue with the help of original data on the composition of elites across all non-democracies that I am collecting. In a first project, I examine to what extent dictators' strategies of retaining the same elites or reshuffling them increase or decrease their risk of being deposed by coups.

Regime Changes (Democratization and Autocratization)

I am working on several projects that assess the dangers to democracy, such as disinformation and changes in the overall party systems. In addition, I am also working on a project that analyses to what extent democracy assistance given to other countries is effective in promoting democracy abroad.