Why do some rebel groups successfully establish stable and sustainable states after civil wars, while others fail? Angola and the Democratic Republic of the Congo are two African countries that experienced long and bloody civil wars. Despite the commonalities, the two cases strongly diverged in the political outcomes after civil war. Angola successfully made the transition to stability and prosperity, while the DRC slipped back into violence. This thesis compares and contrasts between the two peace- building processes in both countries. The results illustrate that two main variables made the difference between the two cases, the geography of the capital city and the strength of state institutions. The two variables allowed the regime in Angola to defeat the opposition and establish control over the whole territory, thereby independently implemented locally crafted peace building-process. On the other side, external intervention in the peace-building process undermined stabilization efforts.


School of Humanities and Social Sciences


Political Science Department

Degree Name

MA in Political Science

Graduation Date

Spring 6-15-2024

Submission Date


First Advisor

Nadine Sika

Committee Member 1

Nesrine Badawi

Committee Member 2

Sean Lee


108 p.

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Institutional Review Board (IRB) Approval

Not necessary for this item