Why? A Dynamic Theory of Power and Plenty under Dictatorships

  • Hans H. TungEmail author
Part of the Politics and Development of Contemporary China book series (PDCC)


As explained in the introduction to this book, while economic growth can be instrumental to enhancing the legitimacy of an authoritarian regime among the ruled for what it delivers, it nonetheless can also be a “curse” that destabilizes the ruling coalition and gives rise to an impetus for change in authoritarian institutions. This chapter continues to show theoretically why such a curse can take place endogenously. There are two major theoretical pillars: the growth-enhancing effect of authoritarian institutions and the institution-induced dynamic inconsistency. The former explains why authoritarian institutions might sow the seeds of their own instability over time, and the latter explicates the mechanism through which the politically centrifugal effect can arise between the dictator and the elite.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Political Science/Center for Research in Econometric Theory and ApplicationsNational Taiwan UniversityTaipeiTaiwan

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