Formal Models of Nondemocratic Politics
Annual Review of Political Science, Forthcoming
39 Pages Posted: 16 Sep 2015 Last revised: 25 Sep 2015
Date Written: August 1, 2015
The last decade has witnessed growing interest among political scientists and economists in nondemocratic politics. This trend has been reflected in increasingly rigorous game-theoretic modeling of its various aspects: regime persistence and breakdown; ruling-coalition formation and leadership change; protests and repression; formal institutions and elections; censorship and media control. We review this research agenda, focusing on the foundational assumptions and political intuition behind key models. Our survey reveals a field populated by disparate models of particular mechanisms that nonetheless share two major analytical themes: asymmetries of information and commitment problems. We propose that future models move toward a genuinely comparative study of authoritarian institutions.
Keywords: nondemocratic politics, dictatorship, game theory
JEL Classification: D72, P16, C72
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation