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Three Essays on Protest and Negotiations

Inata, Kana (2019) Three Essays on Protest and Negotiations. PhD thesis, University of Essex.

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This dissertation explores the conditions under which protests successfully coerce political leaders into compromise, and the causal mechanisms by which protests succeed or fail. Although the conventional wisdom suggests that protests mobilising more resources, such as people, money, facilities, and violence, are more likely to achieve their goals, this is now under increasing empirical challenge and needs theoretical refining. This dissertation is structured in three papers, all of which analyse the variance in the consequences of protests by emphasising their role as threats to governments. The first chapter examines how the effect of a protest as a threat changes depending on the presence or absence of rival groups. The second chapter investigates whether and how public opinion affects dissident groups’ choice of resistance tactics, violence or nonviolence, and the government responsiveness to each type of resistance. The third chapter explores how third-party interventions following protests affect protesters’ ability to pose a threat and promise a reward to a government and hence the probability of success of that protest. Due to the difficulty of measuring the size of resource mobilisation for protests and the impact of those resources, these questions have not been addressed systematically. Tackling this shortcoming, I have built on game-theoretic models to generate theoretical insights and guide alternative qualitative and quantitative analyses. I argue that the conventional monotone relationship between the size of resource mobilisation and the efficiency of threats holds only under limited conditions. Considering the real-world diversity in protest groups’ preferences, actors who can threaten governments, and domestic audiences watching the bargaining between protesters and a government, less resourceful protests may have more bargaining power than those that have more resources. The findings provide a coherent theory of the consequences of protests that bridges the conventional wisdom and phenomena that the conventional wisdom cannot explain.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Government, Department of
Depositing User: Kana Inata
Date Deposited: 19 Jul 2019 12:47
Last Modified: 19 Jul 2019 12:47

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