Jonathan M. Powell, Ph.D.
I am an Associate Professor in the School of Politics, Security, and International Affairs at the University of Central. Prior to joining UCF in 2014 I spent two years as an early faculty member in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at Nazarbayev University in Kazakhstan. My research primarily centers on the causes and consequences of political instability, though I have broader interests in civil-military relations, democratization, and human security.
You can find a description of my professional activities below, but please reach out to me with any questions.
Associate Professor of Political Science, University of Central Florida, 2018-present
Assistant Professor of Political Science, University of Central Florida, 2014-2018
Assistant Professor of Political Science, Nazarbayev University, 2012-2014
Ph.D., Political Science, University of Kentucky, 2013
M.A., Government, Eastern Kentucky University, 2007
B,A., Anthopology, Western Kentucky University, 2005
Powell, Jonathan, and Salah Ben Hammou. 2022. “Revisiting Coup Conceptualization over Time.” International Studies Review.
Powell, Jonathan, Rebecca Schiel, and Salah Ben Hammou. 2021. Oil Wealth, Risk Acceptance, and the Seizure of Power. Journal of Global Security Studies.
Schiel, Rebecca, Jonathan Powell, and Chris Faulkner. 2021. Mutiny in Africa, 1950-2018. Conflict Management and Peace Science 38(4):481-499.
Vasquez, Paul, and Jonathan Powell. 2021. Institutional Arsenals for Democracy? Conscription, Coups, and Democracy. Armed Forces & Society 47(2):298-318.
Banini, Daniel, Jonathan Powell, and Michael Yekple. 2020. Peacekeeping as Coup Avoidance: Lessons from Ghana. African Security 13(3):235-259.
Schiel, Rebecca, Jonathan Powell, and Ursula Daxecker. 2020. Peacekeeping and Mutinies in African Sending States. Foreign Policy Analysis 16(3):251-271.
Christopher Faulkner, Jonathan Powell, and Trace Lasley. 2019. Creed versus Deed: Illicit Financing, Rebel Goals, and the Use of Child Soldiers. Third World Quarterly 40(6):1017-1039.
Powell, Jonathan, Mwita Chacha, and Gary Smith. 2019. Opening Up or Digging in? Failed Coups, Democratization, and Authoritarian Entrenchment. African Affairs 118(471):238-258.
Powell, Jonathan, and Mwita Chacha. 2019. Closing the Book on Africa’s First-Generation Coups. African Studies Quarterly 18(2): 87-94.
Faulkner, Christopher, Joshua Lambert, and Jonathan Powell. 2019. Reassessing Private Military and Security Company (PMSC) 'Competition' in Civil War: Lessons from Sierra Leone. Small Wars & Insurgencies 30(3):641-659.
Powell, Jonathan. 2019. Leader Survival Strategies and the Onset of Civil Conflict: The Paradox of Coup-Proofing. Armed Forces & Society 45(1):27-44.
Powell, Jonathan, and Karina Mukazhanova-Powell. 2019. Demonstrating Credentials?: Female Executives, Women’s Status, and the Use of Force. Journal of Women, Politics, & Policy 40(2):241-262.
Powell, Jonathan. 2019. Of Strong Men and Straw Men: Appraising Post-Coup Political Developments. Military Review July-August:47-53. (editorially reviewed).
Thyne, Clayton, and Jonathan Powell. 2019. Coup Research. Oxford Research Encyclopedia of International Studies.
Besaw, Clayton, Matthew Frank, Eric Keels, Jay Benson, John Filitz, and Jonathan Powell. 2019. Annual Risk of Coup Report. One Earth Future. OEF Research. April.
Thyne, Clayton, Jonathan Powell, Sarah Parrott, and Emily VanMeter. 2018. The Influence of Post-Coup Signals on Regime Survival. Journal of Conflict Resolution 62(7):1406-1432.
Powell, Jonathan, Christopher Faulkner, William Dean, and Kyle Romano. 2018. Give them Toys?: Military Allocations and Regime Stability in Transitional Democracies. Democratization 25(7):1153-1172.
Schroeder, Theresa, and Jonathan Powell. 2018. The Right Man for the Job: Gender as a Source of Civil-Military Friction. Armed Forces & Society 44(3):460-475.
Chacha, Mwita, and Jonathan Powell. 2018. “Economic Interdependence and Post-Coup Democratization.” In Kuehn, David (editor). The Military’s Impact on Democratic Development: Midwives or Gravediggers of Democracy? New York, NY: Routledge.
Chacha, Mwita, and Jonathan Powell. 2017. Economic Interdependence and Post-Coup Democratization. Democratization 24(5):819-838.
Schiel, Rebecca, Christopher Faulkner, and Jonathan Powell. 2017. Mutiny in Côte d’Ivoire. Africa Spectrum 52(2):103-115.
Powell, Jonathan, and Mwita Chacha. 2016. Investing in Stability: Economic Interdependence, the Capitalist Peace, and Coups d’état. Journal of Peace Research 53(4):525-538.
Powell, Jonathan, Trace Lasley, and Rebecca Schiel. 2016. Combating Coups d’état in Africa, 1950-2014. Studies in Comparative International Development 51(4):482-502.
Powell, Jonathan, and Theresa Schroeder. 2016. Friends in Low Places?: The Conditional Effect of Trade on Women’s Status. Studies in Comparative International Development 51(2):169-188.
Thyne, Clayton, and Jonathan Powell. 2016. Coup d’état or Coup d’Autocracy? The Impact of Coups on Democratization, 1950-2008. Foreign Policy Analysis 12(2):192-213.
Powell, Jonathan. 2014. Trading Coups for Civil War: The Strategic Logic of Tolerating Rebellion in Africa, 1971-2000. African Security Review 23(4):329-338.
Powell, Jonathan. 2014. An Assessment of the ‘Democratic’ Coup Theory: Democratic Trajectories in Africa, 1961-2012. African Security Review 23(3):213-224.
Powell, Jonathan. 2014. Regime Vulnerability and the Diversionary Threat of Force. Journal of Conflict Resolution 58(1):169-196.
Powell, Jonathan. 2014. Determinants of the Attempting and Outcome of Coups d’état. Journal of Conflict Resolution 56(6):1017-1040.
*InCites Highly Cited Article (top 1% of social sciences)
Powell, Jonathan, and Clayton Thyne. 2011. Global Instances of Coups from 1950-2010: A New Dataset. Journal of Peace Research 48(2):249-259.
*InCites Highly Cited Article (top 1% of social sciences)
“Are coups really contagious.” With Salah Ben Hammou. Washington Post (Monkey Cage). November 22.
“Failed coup but successful transition? Contextualizing Sudan’s latest coup plot.” With Salah Ben Hammou. Cairo Review of Global Affairs. October 12.
“Another mutiny turned coup: Mali is no stranger to military unrest.” With Christopher Faulkner, Jaclyn Johnson, and Rebecca Schiel. The Conversation. August 21.
“Population size does not explain the high number of COVID-19 Cases in the United States.” With Christopher Faulkner. Cairo Review of Global Affairs. April 4.
“Flattening the curve.” (on Covid19). With Christopher Faulkner. Duck of Minerva. March 16.
“Guinea Bissau election inspires optimism – but there are still big risks.” With Clayton Besaw. The Conversation. February 16.
“Bissau-Guineans hold their breath – again – as uncertainty deepens.” With Clayton Besaw. The Conversation. November 3. Republished in All Africa, African Eye Report, etc.
“Essebsi is Gone: Tunisia’s young democracy faces its toughest test.” With Clayton Besaw. The Conversation. August 15, 2019. Republished by All Africa, The Wire (India), Premium Times (Nigeria), etc.
“Peeling back the layers on the role of private military and security companies in Africa.” With Chris Faulkner and Joshua Lambert. The Conversation. August 4. Republished by The Africa Report, Quartz, StarFM (Ghana), etc.
“Rivalries ahead of Guinea-Bissau’s Election Raise Questions about Stability.” The Conversation. With Clayton Besaw and Devyn Escalanti. July 14. Reposted in All Africa, Middle East and North Africa Financial Network, etc.
“Understanding Coup Risk in Guinea-Bissau.” With Clayton Besaw. Political Violence @ a Glance. March 25.
“Did the Zimbabwe Coup Encourage Gabon’s Plotters?” With Mwita Chacha. Political Violence @ a Glance. January 24. Republished by This Week in Africa.
“The coup in Gabon surprised everyone. Why forecasts, and the plot, failed.” With Clayton Besaw. The Conversation. January 15. Republished by All Africa, Polity (South Africa), The Rwandan, WorldNews (WN) Network, Business Times Africa, etc.
“It’s been one year since Zimbabwe toppled Mugabe. Why isn’t it a democracy yet?” With Mwita Chacha. Washington Post (Monkey Cage). November 17. Republished by The Zimbabwean, New Zimbabwe, The Observer (Zimbabwe), etc.
“Elections and Coup Risk in Zimbabwe One Year after the Coup d’état.” With Clayton Besaw.” Political Violence @ a Glance. November 7.
“Silent Guns: Examining the Two-Year Absence of Coups in Africa.” With Rebecca Schiel. Political Violence @ a Glance. September 18.
“Will Turkey’s coup attempt prompt others nearby?” With Curtis Bell. Washington Post (Monkey Cage). July 30.
“Turkey’s coup attempt was unusual, but not for the reasons you expect.” With Curtis Bell. Washington Post (Monkey Cage). July 22.
“The Military in Politics: Complications in Counting.” Lawyers, Guns, & Money. May 20.
“Will Thailand’s Coup Actually Fix Anything.” Washington Post (Monkey Cage). May 29.
“Conflict, Self-interest, and Disaggregating the Pointy End of the State.” Lawyers Guns & Money. November 26.