Military spending as a coup-proofing strategy: opening the ‘black box’ for Spain (1850-1915)

Research output: Working paper


Armies have recurrently intervened in politics by leading (or giving support to) coups d’état. Several authors suggest that civilian governments have used military spending to overcome armies’ grievances and avoid their insubordination. However, recent quantitative analyses do not reach conclusive results when exploring the impact of total military expenditure on the frequency and the success of coups d’état. We argue that total military spending might not be a good indicator of governments’ effort to gain the loyalty of the army, as it may conceal relevant changes in the composition of the military budget. This paper aims to open the military spending ‘black box’. While total military spending does not seem to have any relationship with the frequency of coups, payments to officers (along with other coup-proofing strategies) appears to be associated to a lower frequency of coups in 1850-1915 Spain.


External organisations
  • University of Barcelona
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Political Science


Original languageEnglish
Number of pages43
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Dec
Publication categoryResearch

Publication series

NameSTANCE Working Papers Series

Related projects

Jan Teorell, Jens Bartelson, Annika Björkdahl, Hanna Bäck, Agustín Goenaga, Martin Hall, Sara Kalm, Johannes Lindvall, Ellen Ravndal, Ted Svensson, Alexander von Hagen-Jamar, Linda Eitrem Holmgren, Lina Hjärtström, Moa Olin & Martin Hansen

The Bank of Sweden Tercentenary Foundation: Swedish Foundation for Humanities and Social Science Research


Project: ResearchInternal collaboration (LU)

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