Is there an Autocratic Civil Peace? Authoritarian Regimes and Civil Conflict, 1971–2001

Conference Paper

Fjelde, Hanne (2008) Is there an Autocratic Civil Peace? Authoritarian Regimes and Civil Conflict, 1971–2001, presented at 49th Annual Meeting of the International Studies Association, San Francisco, CA, 26–29 March.

​Does the risk of civil war vary among different types of authoritarian regimes? This article uses a new data set compiled by Axel Hadenius and Jan Teorell to examine the occurrence of civil war in four types of authoritarian regimes – military, monarchy, single-party and multiparty autocracies – from 1973 to the present. The answer to the above question is affirmative. Compared to military and limited, multiparty authoritarian regimes, single-party authoritarian regimes have a lower risk of armed conflict. The association between military regimes and civil conflict cannot be attributed to a higher risk of military coups in these regimes. There is thus a substantial variation in the risk of conflict associated with characteristics of the different authoritarian regime types. This suggest the need for a more sophisticated notion of authoritarianism than what we find in existing research on civil conflict.

Authors

Hanne Fjelde

Hanne Fjelde

Senior Researcher, PRIO; Assistant Professor, Department of Peace and Conflict Research, Uppsala University