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Sustaining Civil Peace: A Configurational Comparative Analysis

Thomas Gries and Irene Palnau ORCID logo


While much work has been devoted to the causes and consequences of civil war, little has been done to explore the prerequisites for civil peace. We shift the focus from the determinants of war to the preconditions to sustain peace, and address the following question: Are there necessary or sufficient conditions for stable civil peace? We use Qualitative Comparative Analysis to approach this question. We do not find necessary conditions for civil peace, but distinct potentially sufficient paths. These are (i) the presence of a fully democratic regime and (ii) the presence of a strongly autocratic regime, with the latter further requiring either a) the absence of a youth bulge and non-miserable living conditions or b) the absence of ethnic tensions. The first type of civil peace is referred to as inherent civil peace whereas the second type is largely a result of strong repression and thus denoted coerced civil peace.

JEL Classification:: B50; F52; H10

Corresponding author: Thomas Gries, Department of Economics, University of Paderborn, Warburger Straße 100, 33098 Paderborn, Germany, E-mail:


Table A1

Assignment of cases to configurations.

1Austria 1995; Belgium 1995; Canada 1995; Cyprus 1995; Denmark 1995; Spain 1995; France 1995; United Kingdom 1995; Ireland 1995; Italy 1995; Japan 1995; Mauritius 1995; Netherlands 1995; New Zealand 1995; Portugal 1995; Uruguay 1995
2Bolivia 1995; Dominican Republic 1995; Ecuador 1995; Guyana 1995; Egypt 1991 (cw); Guinea 1999 (cw); India 1982 (cw); Peru 1981 (cw); South Africa 1983 (cw)
3Botswana 1995; Ghana 1995; Lesotho 1995; Namibia 1995; Swaziland 1995; Colombia 1974 (cw); Nigeria 2005 (cw); Nicaragua 1977 (cw)
4Burkina Faso 1995; Cameroon 1995; Madagascar 1995; Mauritania 1995; Malawi 1995; Niger 1995; Togo 1995; Zambia 1995
5Argentina 1995; Chile 1995; Fiji 1995; South Korea 1995; Malaysia 1995; Tunisia 1995; Albania 1996 (cw)
6United Arab Emirates 1995; Switzerland 1995; Cuba 1995; Finland 1995; Greece 1995; Hungary 1995; Sweden 1995
7Benin 1995; Guinea-Bissau 1997 (cw); Morocco 1974 (cw); Philippines 1971 (cw); Papua New Guinea 1988 (cw); El Salvador 1978 (cw)
8Australia 1995; Costa Rica 1995; Norway 1995; Panama 1995; Saudi Arabia 1995; United States 1995
9Nigeria 1995; Democratic Republic of Congo 1991 (cw); Congo 1996 (cw); Algeria 1990 (cw); Liberia 1984 (cw); Senegal 1991 (cw)
10Brazil 1995; Jamaica 1995; Mexico 1995; Paraguay 1995; Trinidad and Tobago 1995; Mexico 2006 (cw)
11Burundi 1971 (cw); Burundi 1987 (cw); Kenya 1990 (cw); Somalia 1987 (cw)
12Bulgaria 1995; Estonia 1995; Latvia 1995; Ukraine 1995
13Turkmenistan 1995; Democratic Republic of Congo 1976 (cw); Sierra Leone 1990 (cw)
14Uzbekistan 1995; Bangladesh 1975 (cw); Sudan 1982 (cw)
15Kyrgyzstan 1995; Mongolia 1995
16Gabon 1995; Turkey 1983 (cw)
17Laos 1995; Syria 1978 (cw)
18Gambia 1995; Rwanda 1989 (cw)
19Iran 1995; Honduras 1995
20Nepal 1995 (cw)
21Iran 1976 (cw)
22Venezuela 1995
23Jordan 1995
24Syria 1995
25Bhutan 1995
26Mali 1989 (cw)

Row numbers match those in the truth table (Table 1). Civil war cases are market with (cw).


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Published Online: 2015-8-26
Published in Print: 2015-12-1

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