Prof Pens Landmark Book On Democracy

This article is over 8 years old.

BRANDON, MB – A Brandon University (BU) professor has written a ground-breaking book: a go-to guide for politicians and policy-makers trying to bring peace to conflict-ravaged regions. Power-Sharing and Political Stability in Deeply Divided Societies, by Dr. Allison McCulloch, is the first major comparison of the two most common power-sharing models used in peace accords over the last 20 years.

Dr. Allison McCullough, June 2014 (web)“Many societies are deeply divided along ethnic and religious lines,” says Dr. McCulloch, “and it’s important to know what forms of democracy have worked elsewhere, when leaders create new government after conflict and must decide who gets a seat at the table.”

Dr. McCulloch studied eight different countries that rebuilt governance through either consociationalism, a broad inclusion of all ethnic groups as demonstrated in Northern Ireland, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Burundi and Lebanon; or centripetalism, a more controlled approach seen in Nigeria, Fiji, Papua New Guinea and Sri Lanka, whereby moderate political parties require cross-community support in order to be elected.

“These sorts of discussions are important right now when we look at unrest in Ukraine or Syria, and what will happen after,” says Dr. McCulloch. “That has been one of the rewarding aspects of writing this book, the real-world implications.”

BU President and Vice-Chancellor, Dr. Gervan Fearon, says, “Allison’s book is a seminal work in ethnic conflict management, power-sharing, and democracy. We are proud of her accomplishment, and contributions to peace-building around the globe. The ideas discussed in her book contribute to an understanding surrounding ethnic conflicts and, through this understanding, we gain hope for the foundation for peace.”

Power-Sharing and Political Stability in Deeply Divided Societies, book cover, 2014A book launch will be held on the BU campus Friday, October 3 at 3:30 in Clark Hall, Room 104, as part of the Faculty of Arts Speakers’ Series. Refreshments will be served and all are welcome to attend. Power-Sharing and Political Stability in Deeply Divided Societies is published by Routledge, and available through

Brandon University, founded in 1899, promotes excellence in teaching, research, and scholarship; educating students so that they can make a meaningful difference as engaged citizens and leaders.



To receive any BU publication in an alternate format please contact

About BU

Success is built at Brandon University. Our growing, progressive campus welcomes a diverse and inclusive community that combines proud tradition with shared ambition. Through our excellence in teaching, research, and scholarship, we educate students to make a meaningful difference as engaged citizens and leaders. Join us at