Ambition, personalist regimes, and control of authoritarian leaders
Journal of Theoretical Politics, 2017, vol. 29, issue 2, 167-190
Why do elites in some authoritarian regimes but not others remove from power the leaders who harm their interests? We develop a formal theory explaining this. The theory shows how elitesâ€™ ambition prevents them from controlling authoritarian leaders. Because ambitious elites are willing to stage coups to acquire power even when the leader is good, ambition renders elitesâ€™ claims that the leaderâ€™s actions harm them less credible, making the other elites less likely to support coups. We show that the impact of the proportion of competent politicians on personalist regimes is non-monotonic: personalist regimes are most likely to emerge not only when there are few competent politicians but also when there are lots of them. We also provide insight into which elites become coup-plotters. The theory explains the emergence of personalist regimes, the frequency of coups, and why some authoritarian countries enjoy a more competent leadership than others.
Keywords: authoritarian regimes; political control; coups (search for similar items in EconPapers)
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations: Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:sae:jothpo:v:29:y:2017:i:2:p:167-190
Access Statistics for this article
More articles in Journal of Theoretical Politics
Bibliographic data for series maintained by SAGE Publications ().