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Jack Paine: Power Sharing and Authoritarian Stability: Evidence from Rebel Regimes

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Moynihan Institute of Global Affairs 

Comparative Politics/International Relations presents

Power Sharing and Authoritarian Stability: Evidence from Rebel Regimes 

Co-Authored with Anne Meng, University of Virginia 

Jack Paine is an associate professor of political science at the University of Rochester. His research focuses on authoritarian politics, democratization, and civil war. These themes motivate the paper he will present, “Power Sharing and Authoritarian Stability: Evidence from Rebel Regimes.” This paper addresses the age-old dilemma that dictators face when they are reliant on their military to gain and maintain power. Although the military potentially serves as a prop to authoritarian rule, it also poses a grave threat to displace the ruler, and instead to rule itself. Given this problem, it is surprising that regimes that gain power by winning a civil war—rebel regimes—tend to be more durable than other authoritarian regimes. Analyzing data from post-colonial Africa, the paper explains the central role for sharing power with military elites. Because leaders of rebel regimes reshaped their military during the conflict to gain power, sharing power can credibly distribute spoils among elites while posing a relatively low risk of overthrow by regime insiders.

Jack Paine

Associate Professor 

University of Rochester

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