Electoral Violence in the Western Balkans: From Voting to Fighting and Back, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Electoral Violence in the Western Balkans

From Voting to Fighting and Back, 1st Edition

By Michal Mochtak


232 pages | 15 B/W Illus.

Purchasing Options:$ = USD
Hardback: 9780415788366
pub: 2017-07-27
eBook (VitalSource) : 9781315225319
pub: 2017-07-20
from $28.98

FREE Standard Shipping!


Since the end of the Cold War there have been a number of cases where the democratization process has been turbulent, or even violent. Addressing electoral violence, its evolution and impact in the Western Balkans, this book explores the conflict logic of election and tries to understand its basic patterns. Two decades of electoral competition in the region are analysed to identify an interesting evolution of electoral violence in terms of forms, actors, motivations and dynamics.

By identifying the potential drivers of electoral violence and explaining the escalation and stimulus of violence-related events, the author combines a theoretical approach with original data to emphasise the variability of the phenomenon and its evolution in the region.

The book will appeal to students and scholars of post-communist Europe and democratisation processes and the Western Balkans in particular. It should also be of interest to political advisors and those involved in developing or implementing democratisation programmes.


"Recent research has shown elections in a positive light – they are moments when democratic actors have an opportunity to defeat authoritarian and quasi-authoritarian rulers. Michal Mochtak, however, sheds light on a darker side of elections, their potential to provoke conflict and violence. This book provides nuanced arguments grounded in both data and qualitative fieldwork that will help policymakers to not only predict when electoral violence is going to occur, but also prevent it from happening." - Andrew Roberts, Northwestern University, USA.

"This comprehensive study of post-Communist electoral violence in the Western Balkans is a welcome addition to the literature which has tended to focus on Asia, Africa and Latin America. It is a salutary warning to optimists who expect strong external interest and support for democratic practices to ensure a smooth transformation to democracy." - John O’Loughlin, University of Colorado, USA.

"A must-read book for anybody interested in qualitative comparative analysis (QCA). In this insightful and empirically enormous work, Michal Mochtak explains why electoral violence emerges in some places and does not in others. This book generates both reflection and desire to research." - Julián Cárdenas, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1 - Introduction

Chapter 2 – From Violence to Electoral Violence

Chapter 3 Contexts of Electoral Violence

Chapter 4 – Patterns of Electoral Violence

Chapter 5 – Recipes for Electoral Violence in the Western Balkans

Chapter 6 – Conclusion

About the Author

Dr Michal Mochtak is a Research Fellow at the International Institute of Political Science, Masaryk University. His research interests cover hybrid regimes, electoral violence and conflicts. He published his papers in Terrorism and Political Violence, Journal of Southeast European and Black Sea Studies, Democracy and Security or World Political Science. He is one of the co-authors of the publications Challenges to Democracies in East Central Europe (London, New York: Routledge 2016) and Demokratizace a lidská práva. Středoevropské pohledy (Brno - Praha: MUNI Press – SLON 2013 and Krakow – Brno: Osrodek Mysli Politycznej – Uniwersytet Masaryka 2016). He regularly lectures on transformation processes and political violence in Central and Eastern Europe. See more www.mochtak.com.

About the Series

Southeast European Studies

Southeast European Studies

The Balkans are a region of Europe widely associated over the past decades with violence and war. Beyond this violence, the region has experienced rapid change in recent times though, including democratization, economic and social transformation. New scholarship is emerging which seeks to move away from the focus on violence alone to an understanding of the region in a broader context drawing on new empirical research.

The Southeast European Studies Series seeks to provide a forum for this new scholarship. Publishing cutting-edge, original research and contributing to a more profound understanding of Southeastern Europe while focusing on contemporary perspectives the series aims to explain the past and seeks to examine how it shapes the present. Focusing on original empirical research and innovative theoretical perspectives on the region the series includes original monographs and edited collections. It is interdisciplinary in scope, publishing high-level research in political science, history, anthropology, sociology, law and economics and accessible to readers interested in Southeast Europe and beyond.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings: