Populism in the Andean Region: From Erosion to Breakdown of Democracy


Location: Hesburgh Center, Room C103

René Antonio Mayorga; senior researcher at the Centro Boliviano de Estudios Multidisciplinarios and associate professor of political science at FLASCO-Ecuador; Kellogg Institute Visiting Fellow, University of Notre Dame

René Mayorga (Ph.D., Free University of Berlin) has focused his research on weak states and populism in the Andean region. His Kellogg project, “State Weakness, Left Populism, and Erosion of Democracy in the Andean Region,” posits that democratic governments in Bolivia, Venezuela, and Ecuador failed to build stable and effective state institutions that would foster social inclusion, leading to state crisis. He asserts that authoritarian populism in the Andes constitutes a new pattern of democratic regime breakdown.

Previously a research fellow at the Guggenheim Foundation and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Mayorga has been a visiting professor at universities across the Americas and Europe. He is the author of numerous books and articles on democracy and political changes in the Andean region. This spring is his third stint as a Kellogg visiting fellow, following visits in 1994 and 2001.