Department of Conflict Resolution Studies Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences – Department of Conflict Resolution Studies

First Advisor

Alexia Georgakopoulos

Second Advisor

Elena P. Bastidas

Third Advisor

Urszula Strawinska-Zanko


Chile, civil-military relations, conflict resolution, human rights, military, negotiation


Compliance and control of the Chilean armed forces, a powerful and politically influential organization, is critical to a healthy democracy in the country. The period of the transition to democracy, from the end of the 17-year military government in 1990 to the consolidation of a liberal democracy in 2010, was marked by tension and strained relations between Chilean military officers and civilian elected officials. Chilean civilian government officials – outside military circles – need to understand the reasons for military institutional resistance to identify constructive negotiation techniques. The research question is: “what negotiation techniques of civilian leaders worked best to break down that institutional defiance of the Chilean military?” To support the case study analysis of Chile during the 20-year transition period from 1990-2010, phenomenological analysis of interviews with 25 Chilean military officers and content analysis from 50 primary source documents written by Chilean military officers provide important insights into the military institutional culture and philosophy. Combined, the Chilean case study – supported by phenomenological interviews and qualitative content analysis – help identify nine negotiation techniques for effectively managing the Chilean military. The end product is an interpretivist and qualitative study of the challenges associated with negotiations with the Chilean armed forces in post-conflict transitions to democracy.