Territorial Self-Governance and Proportional Representation: Reducing the Risk of Territory-Centred Intrastate Violence

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After decades of scholarship, there is still little agreement about the usefulness of territorial self-governance in managing territory-centred conflicts. We argue that the effectiveness of territorial self-governance as a tool of territory-centred conflict management increases when combined with a proportional representation (PR) electoral system for the national legislature in basically open political regimes, but not when combined with a parliamentary form of government at the centre. We propose that the combination of territorial self-governance and PR in at least minimally democratic regimes has most conflict-reducing potential, as both institutions follow a logic of widening the input side of representative politics. We find empirical support for this proposition using binary time-series cross-section analysis is found. Our findings highlight the need to consider not just the number but, more importantly, the type of power-sharing institutions that are combined with each other when looking for ways to reduce the risk of territory-centred intrastate violence.


Original languageEnglish
JournalTerritory, Politics, Governance
Early online date11 Jun 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 11 Jun 2020


    Research areas

  • conflict, electoral system, power sharing, territorial self-governance

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ID: 181639363

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