Algeria: Oil and Public Opinion

  • Paola Rivetti
  • Francesco Cavatorta
Chapter

Abstract

Hydrocarbon revenues have long played a central role in Algeria, where the non-transparent circumstances of their redistribution have enabled the government to survive the Arab Spring and remain in power despite the socio-economic problems affecting the country. This chapter observes that public debate and repression of public dissent co-exist, while oil and gas revenues are used to co-opt and repress demands for reform voiced by civil society. Open discussion, especially concerning the need for economic diversification, is permitted because it is not seen as particularly dangerous to the regime and because civil society activism has limited impact on decision-making. Although civil society is not able to generate major institutional change at the national level, research institutes, opposition parties, media outlets, some institutional actors and ordinary citizens are increasingly contributing to and shaping the public debate over how oil and gas rents are to be used.

Keywords

Algeria Natural resources Oil Gas Petroleum governance Public debate Civil society AuthoritarianismDemocracyShale gas Decision-making 

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paola Rivetti
    • 1
  • Francesco Cavatorta
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Law and GovernmentDublin City UniversityDublinIreland
  2. 2.Department of Political ScienceLaval UniversityQuebecCanada

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