This chapter demonstrates that state structures that accommodate ethnic and regional diversity may be a source of state fragility during democratization, but a source of democratic robustness after it. B. J. Habibie, the president at the time of the transition, had responded to secessionist ambitions by quickly devolving political authority and fiscal resources, allowing for one of the most thorough-going and rapid decentralization processes ever recorded in the history of democratization. Indonesia's democratic transition enjoyed the best of both worlds, with an institutional legacy inherited from authoritarian rule that privileged national political structures and identities over regional ones and with a series of transitional governments that were willing to make dramatic concessions to regional sentiment in the process of democratic transformation.
|Title of host publication||Democracy and Islam in Indonesia|
|Editors||Mirjam Kunkler and Alfred Stepan|
|Place of Publication||New York Chichester, West Sussex|
|Publisher||Columbia University Press|
|Publication status||Published - 2013|