Much comparative research and theory-building has been undertaken on politics in Western democracies. There has been theorizing on democratization and the sustainability of democracies on Asian cases. But the relationship between coalition politics and the consolidation of democracy in thecontext of developing and multi-ethnic Asian countries characterized by evolving parties and alliances remains largely under-researched. This volume compares the patterns of coalition politics and of institutionalization of democracy in four Asian countries-India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, and Japan-that have experienced a significant period of coalition politics. The essays, by leading country scholars, examine whether coalition politicsand its inevitable sharing of power is conducive to the consolidation of, and/or improvement in, the quality of democracy. Their findings suggest that coalition politics conduces to power-sharing and hence to the consolidation of democracy only under certain conditions, depending on whetherinclusive parties and coalitions get institutionalized, and whether the coalitions are formed within or across ethnic and other cleavages.