How? The Dictator’s Divide-and-Rule Strategy

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


I showed in Chap.  2 that changes of authoritarian institutions can arise endogenously owing to their effects on the underlying balance of power between the dictator and the elite. While this explains the “why” question, in this chapter, I proceed to offer an explanation for “how” such a change can take place. This chapter shows that, despite the presence of the authoritarian institutions, the dictator is still able to change them by disrupting the elite coordination with a discriminative power-sharing scheme. Moreover, this chapter also develops a complete framework where the dictator’s commitment problem is included. The divide-and-conquer strategy might not be able to work effectively when the dictator has no commitment power. All the predictions made in this chapter provide a good foundation for us to do empirical analysis in the following chapters.


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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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