Decentralization and Democracy in Indonesia

Strengthening Citizenship or Regional Elites?

Authored by: Henk Schulte Nordholt

Routledge Handbook of Southeast Asian Politics

Print publication date:  December  2011
Online publication date:  March  2012

Print ISBN: 9780415494274
eBook ISBN: 9780203155011
Adobe ISBN: 9781136579196


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Because Soeharto’s authoritarian New Order regime (1966–98) was highly centralized, political observers focused their attention almost exclusively on the political centre, where more than 70 per cent of the money of the national economy circulated. Developments in the regions, often depicted as a passive periphery, were by and large ignored. However, after the fall of President Soeharto the relationship between the centre and regions changed fundamentally. From 1999 onwards a transition from authoritarian rule to electoral democracy was accompanied by administrative decentralization.

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