Democratization as an impetus for peace talks in civil wars

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Costs associated with recognizing an internal armed challenger as a legitimate bargaining partner deter governments from initiating peace talks. Yet, peaceful termination of conflict requires formal negotiations between the belligerents. This article presents evidence that democratic reforms provide a window of opportunity for peace talks. Democratic reforms represent an opportunity to break away from the past policies of the state and render the conflict as an artifact of the preceding authoritarian institutions. The article contributes to the research field by enhancing our ability to predict negotiations. It also highlights that democratic reforms can be undertaken during an ongoing civil conflict.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)162-186
Number of pages25
Journal Conflict Management and Peace Science
Issue number2
Early online date7 Mar 2022
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023


  • peace process
  • civil war
  • Negotiation
  • democratization
  • Conflict resolution

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