The Structure of the Evaluations of Democracy
The chapter introduces three evaluation indices which correspond to the indices for the citizens’ views of democracy. The resulting indices are compared to established measures for the quality of democracy—World Bank Governance Indices and Democracy Barometer indicators. This comparison reveals a close correspondence between our aggregate subjective evaluation scores of the quality of democracy in the various countries with the assessments by existing indices. The bulk of the chapter then analyzes the reciprocal relationship between views and evaluations, at the aggregate and at the individual level. The results suggest that it is not so much rising aspirations which account for the relationship between views and evaluations, but much rather mechanisms of dissatisfaction and sensitivity which lead the more maximalist democrats to evaluate their country’s democracy more negatively, and vice versa.