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The Prevalence of Power-Sharing: Exploring the Patterns of Post-Election Peace
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Government.
2009 (English)In: Africa Spectrum, ISSN 0002-0397, Vol. 44, no 3, 41-62 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Why are some elections followed by armed conflict, while others are not? This article begins to explore this question by mapping the prevalence of power-sharing agreements and patterns of post-election peace in states shattered by civil war. While democracy builds on the notion of free political competition and uncertain electoral outcomes, power-sharing reduces the uncertainty by ensuring political power for certain groups. Nevertheless, new data presented in this article – the Post-Accord Elections (PAE) data collection – shows that the issues of peace, power-sharing and democracy have become intertwined as the vast majority of contemporary peace agreements provide for both power-sharing and elections. First, in contrast to previous research which has suggested that power-sharing is a tool for ending violence, this study shows that conflict often continues after an agreement has been signed, even if it includes provisions for power-sharing. Second, this investigation shows no evidence of power-sharing facilitating the holding of elections. On the contrary, it is more common that elections are held following a peace process without power-sharing. Third, a period of power-sharing ahead of the elections does not seem to provide for postelection peace. Rather, such elections are similarly dangerous as post-accord elections held without a period of power-sharing. The good news is that power-sharing does not seem to have a negative effect on post-election peace.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Hamburg: GIGA , 2009. Vol. 44, no 3, 41-62 p.
National Category
Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalization Studies)
Research subject
Political Science
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-131569ISI: 000276613900003OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-131569DiVA: diva2:355047
Electoral violence
Available from: 2010-10-05 Created: 2010-10-05 Last updated: 2011-01-05Bibliographically approved

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Jarstad, Anna
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