Nehginpao Kipgen invited as “Country Expert” for Burma by V-Dem

Published on February 26, 2013

February 26, 2013

Nehginpao Kipgen, general secretary of the U.S.-based Kuki International Forum (KIF) and a researcher on the politics of South and Southeast Asia with a concentration on Burma/ Myanmar, has been invited to serve as a “Country Expert for Burma/Myanmar” for a global academic research project called ‘Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem)’. The V-Dem ( is a collaborative project of eminent social scientists from different academic institutions around the world.

An invitation letter dated February 13, 2013 states that “You were chosen because you already have expertise on many aspects of the political system… and its history. We would be very grateful for your support for this initiative. Improvements in our understanding of democracy depend upon the participation of experts around the world.”

Kipgen in his response to the invitation, which was also posted in his facebook page, wrote “I am honored to be invited as “Country Expert” on Burma/Myanmar by Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem), a collaborative academic research project of the Department of Political Science, University of Gothenburg (Sweden), and the Kellogg Institute, University of Notre Dame (USA). The research theme “Measuring Degrees and Types of Democracy” relates to my area of research interest, that is, democracy, democratic transition, and democratization.”

The V-Dem project aims to “develop more nuanced measurements of democracy: distinct measures of electoral, liberal, participatory, majoritarian, consensual, deliberative, and egalitarian democracy, as well as a number of lower level components of democracy such as free and fair elections, inclusion of women and minorities, judicial independence, and many others. These qualities distinguish V-Dem from extant democracy indices such as the well-known Polity IV and Freedom House indices. V-Dem will cover all countries from 1900 to the present.”

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