Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name


Organizational Unit

Josef Korbel School of International Studies

First Advisor

Erica Chenoweth, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Timothy Sisk

Third Advisor

Cullen Hendrix

Fourth Advisor

Aaron Schneider


Democracy, Democratization, Nonviolent resistance, Political transitions, Protest


Under what conditions will successful nonviolent revolutions be followed by democratization? While the scholarly literature has shown that nonviolent resistance has a positive effect on a country's level of democracy, little research to date has disaggregated this population to explain which cases of successful nonviolent resistance lead to democracy and which do not. In this study I present a theory of democratization in civil resistance transitions in which I argue that political actors' behavior in three strategic challenges: mobilization, maximalism, and holdovers policy, systematically affect the likelihood of democratization. I test this theory using a nested research design that begins with statistical testing on a dataset of every political transition from authoritarian rule in the post-World War II period and continues with three in-depth case studies informed by interviews with key decisionmakers. The testing supports the important of two out of the three challenges: differences in mobilization and maximalism have strong, consistent effects on democratization after civil resistance.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Rights Holder

Jonathan C. Pinckney


Received from ProQuest

File Format




File Size

348 p.


International relations, Political science