This article investigates political demography as a predictor of the onset and prevalence of inter-communal conflict and different political outcomes in cases with conditions that are otherwise quite similar. Applying a most similar systems design, the article compares the Mauritius and Fiji to assess the currency of independent variables to which the article posits political demography as a complementary explanation. The article posits demographic equilibrium between groups in ethnopolitical conflict as favourable towards democratic consolidation; a demographic imbalance, by contrast, appears to have the opposite effect. Political demography distinguishes itself from commonplace ex post facto explanations since demographic trends can be projected into the future. The findings thus have implications for conflict prevention, especially in Small Island Developing States which are among the world's most conflict-prone societies. © 2012 Taylor & Francis.