The Post-Rebel Electoral Parties (PREP) dataset offers an important new tool to study the transformation of rebel groups into political parties. It provides longitudinal data on the electoral participation and performance in national elections of political parties formed by armed opposition groups after civil war. Post-rebel electoral parties sit at the center of overlapping research agendas that address how best to build durable peace, and how to build resilient political systems and capable states after devastating conflict. A better understanding of how and why these parties participate and perform in elections over time is critical to any assessment of liberal peacebuilding. These parties – their strategic choices, organizational development, and impact on the political systems in which they participate – are also relevant to the broader study of comparative democratization, political parties, and party systems. Our dataset follows these parties forward through up to three decades of participation in postwar electoral politics. The current version of the data consists of 78 distinct parties derived from 56 conflict actors. The data cover 322 legislative election years and 216 executive elections in 39 countries over 30 years (1990–2021). This article describes the data and articulates the need for and motivation behind the dataset. We then illustrate the relevance of the data by testing the impact of rebel participation on the long-term peace.
This was originally published on SAGE Publications Ltd: Journal of Peace Research: Table of Contents.