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Foreign-Imposed Regime Change, State Power and Civil War Onset, 1920–2004


This article proposes that foreign-imposed regime changes (FIRCs) make civil war onset more likely when they damage state infrastructural power, as in the context of interstate war, and when they change the target’s political institutions as well as leadership. Using rare events logit to analyse civil war onset from 1920 to 2004, it is found that interstate war and institutional change are virtually necessary (though not sufficient) conditions for an FIRC to cause a civil war. Many control variables are included. The results are robust to different research design specifications; nevertheless, they cannot confirm that occupation troops make an FIRC more likely to spark civil war.

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William Easterly , Shanker Satyanath and Daniel Berger , Superpower Interventions and Their Consequences for Democracy: An Empirical Inquiry (Washington, D.C.: The Brookings Institution, 2008)

Jeff Goodwin , No Other Way Out: States and Revolutionary Movements, 1945–1991 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001)

Stathis N. Kalyvas , The Logic of Violence in Civil War (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006)

Theda Skocpol , States and Social Revolutions: A Comparative Analysis of France, Russia, and China (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1979)

Yossi Shain and Juan J. Linz , Between States: Interim Governments and Democratic Transitions (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995), esp. pp. 4142

Angus Maddison , The World Economy: Historical Statistics (Paris: OECD, 2003)

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British Journal of Political Science
  • ISSN: 0007-1234
  • EISSN: 1469-2112
  • URL: /core/journals/british-journal-of-political-science
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