Published online by Cambridge University Press: 19 February 2016
Institutionalizing civilian control over the military is a crucial challenge for newly democratized nations. This paper aims to answer the question under which conditions civilian control can be established after the transition to democracy, and under which conditions civilian control fails. To answer this question, we draw on original data on civil–military relations in 28 new democracies in Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America and run a fuzzy set qualitative comparative analysis. We find that no single explanatory factor can be considered necessary for the success or failure of civilian control in new democracies, but identify a number of sufficient variable combinations to explain the development of civil–military relations after the transition to democracy.