Steven Fish and Matthew Kroenig [did research] on how dictatorships successfully transition to democracies:
In 2009, working with data collected since 2007, the two claimed to have found a connection that could predict a successful transition between dictatorship and democracy. It was, simply put, to have a post-Revolution legislative body in place before holding national elections to put a single leader in power. The Vaclav Havels and Nelson Mandelas of the world, it turns out, are in the minority.
From Enik Rising.
Another study reported today noted the link between civil wars and uprisings and the El Niño effect in tropical climate countries. During El Niños, there are more civil wars and uprisings. "El Niño, which strikes every three to seven years, may partially account for a fifth of worldwide conflicts during the past half-century."
Then again, "La Niña conditions" which are the flip extreme of the same phenomena, are associated with current drought in Eastern Africa, that is causing tens of thousands of people a month to starve to death in Somolia right now.