African Journal of
Political Science and International Relations

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Pol. Sci. Int. Relat.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1996-0832
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJPSIR
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 382

Full Length Research Paper

Determinants of regime survival in Africa

Michael Seifu    
PhD Candidate, School of Law and Government, Dublin City University, Ireland.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 23 July 2009
  •  Published: 31 August 2009


Political instability has arguably been the most important factor that defined the African political landscape for the past five post-independence decades. Few countries in the region were immune from the costly conflicts that afflicted the region. It is perhaps no surprise then that a growing volume of literature on African political economy chose to explain the lacklustre economic performance of the countries in terms of absence of political stability. However, studies generally tend to downplay the diversities in the political economy trajectories of the different countries in the region. By highlighting one such cross-country variation, this study analyses the determinants of regime survival in Africa. More specifically, we apply survival analysis techniques to identify the institutional features behind observed differences in regime survival. We find that colonial legacy as well as level of income is important determinants of the hazard rates for regime survival in Africa.


Key words: Africa, regime survival, democracy, colonial legacy.