I propose an audience costs game with considerations added from selectorate theory. We see that winning coalition and selectorate size have competing effects on conflict choices in an audience costs setting. Large coalition regimes face lower audience costs than non-democracies, making it harder for them to commit to war. But larger selectorates increase the value of office, making conflict escalation more attractive. Coalition effects dominate when interacted with selectorate size. Evidence from 1816–2014 supports the game's implications. The results indicate that both threat initiation and dispute resolution are better predicted by focusing on domestic, leader-specific variables.
- Audience costs
- selectorate theory
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Economics and Econometrics
- Political Science and International Relations