IE Politics Research Group
(IEPRG) seminar series

Series Description

The seminar series provides a platform for discussing new exciting research in the areas of international relations, comparative politics, and political economy. The series meets four to five times per semester and features presentations of ongoing research by local and international researchers.

All interested are welcome to attend.
For further information, please contact the IEPRG seminar series coordinators: 
Nikitas Konstantinidis and Nina Wiesehomeier
(IE School of International Relations)


















The Authoritarian Wager: Mass Political Action and the Sudden Collapse of Repression
12:00 - 13:30

Prof. Branislav Slantchev (co-authored with Kelly S. Matush, UCSD)

Location: C/ María de Molina 31 bis (B), Madrid, 28006, Room 403 (4th floor)

Abstract: Authoritarian rulers sometimes repress mass political action and sometimes allow it even if it leads to social conflict. The collapse of repression is especially puzzling when rulers have reliable security forces. We develop a game-theoretic model that explores the incentives of authoritarians to repress or permit political contestation. We show that rulers with the capacity to fully repress political action create despotic regimes, but rulers with more moderate, although still formidable, capacity might opt to allow contestation instead. The status quo bias that favors regime supporters weakens their incentive to defend it. When this emboldens dissidents sufficiently to act, the ruler might abandon repression in order to expose supporters to the risk of losing their privileged position, thereby motivating them to defend the regime. Paradoxically, it is the stronger regimes that are more susceptible to an abrupt collapse of repression when their rulers take this authoritarian wager.

Paper: click here (please do not cite without author permission).


MARCH 24th, 2017

APRIL 21st, 2017

APRIL 28th, 2017

MAY 26th, 2017

JUNE 16th, 2017

JULY 14th, 2017


The IE Politics Research Group (IEPRG)

The IE Politics Research Group (IEPRG) gathers faculty from across the university and the business school interested in issues of democracy, development, voting behaviour, ethnic conflict, and social entrepreneurship.


If you would like to attend any of our series, please, let us know about the ones you would like to come.