Publication Date

April 2014


Logan Dancey




English (United States)


Does the choice to adopt nonviolent tactics of civil conflict, rather than violent ones, lead to more democratic outcomes? If so, which democratic transitions can be attributed to nonviolent resistance, and which ones cannot? What causal mechanisms explain how and why there exists a relationship between nonviolent resistance and democratization? By examining the 250 violent and nonviolent civil conflicts between 1945 and 2006 in the NAVCO 2.0 data set and using newly developed methods in the causal inference literature, my empirical thesis produces several findings: (1) nonviolent resistance substantially increases the likelihood of democratization, and the relationship is unlikely spurious or endogenous, (2) nearly all democratic transitions following nonviolent resistance would likely not have occurred when they did had the same campaign used primarily violent tactics, and (3) the relationship between nonviolent resistance and democratization is partially mediated by a success mechan



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