Project Overview: Transitional Justice, that is the act of reckoning with a former authoritarian regime after it has ceased to exist, has direct implications for democratic processes. It influences who decides to go into politics, shapes politicians' behavior while in office, and, finally, influences how they delegate policy decisions. That is why mechanisms of transitional justice far from being the epilogue of an outgoing authoritarian regime are a constitutive part of the new democratic order. How successful these democracies become at staying democracies and their overall quality is a direct consequence of transitional justice. This book distinguishes within transitional justice between transparency mechanisms ---the revelation of authoritarian legacies that were concealed---and purges---the firing of open collaborators of the ancien r\'egime. This distinction throws into stark relief the contrasting effects they have on sustaining and shaping the quality of democratic processes. While transparency regimes unequivocally reduce corruption and improve the programmatic representation political parties can offer, the effect of purges is more ambiguous and contingent on features of the former authoritarian regime as well as current circumstances. At the same time, not all new states are equally well-positioned to carry out purges in the first place. Hence the availability of transitional justice as remedy is not uniformly available. A highly disaggregated global transitional justice dataset allows readers to evaluate these theoretical claims and underscores that the choice between  democracy and justice that scholars have for decades presented newly transitioned societies with is misconstrued.

Bio: Monika Nalepa (PhD, Columbia University) is an associate professor of political science at the University of Chicago. With a focus on post-communist Europe, her research interests include transitional justice, parties and legislatures, and game-theoretic approaches to comparative politics. Her first book, Skeletons in the Closet: Transitional Justice in Post-Communist Europe was published in the Cambridge Studies in Comparative Politics Series and received the Best Book award from the Comparative Democratization section of the APSA and the Leon Epstein Outstanding Book Award from the Political Organizations and Parties section of the APSA. She has published her research in Perspectives on Politics, the Journal of Comparative PoliticsWorld PoliticsJournal of Conflict ResolutionJournal of Theoretical PoliticsStudies in Logic and Rhetoric, and Decyzje. Read more about Monika here. Check out her Google Scholar page here. You can contact Professor Nalepaat mnalepa@uchicago.edu.