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Civil Conflict, Federalism and Strategic Delegation of Leadership

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Author Info

  • Colin Jennings

    (Department of Economics, University of Strathclyde, colin.jennings @strath.ac.uk)

  • Hein Roelfsema

    (Utrecht School of Economics, Utrecht University, h.j.roelfesema@econ. uu.nl)

Abstract

This article analyzes negative externalities that policymakers in one region or group may impose upon the citizens of neighboring regions or groups. These externalities may be material, but they may also be psychological (in the form of envy). The latter form of externality may arise from the production of `conspicuous' public goods. As a result, decentralized provision of conspicuous public goods may be too high. Potentially, a centralized legislature may internalize negative externalities. However, in a model with strategic delegation, we argue that the median voter in each jurisdiction may anticipate a reduction in local public goods supply and delegate to a policymaker who cares more for public goods than she does herself. This last effect mitigates the expected benefits of policy centralization. The authors' theory is then applied to the setting of civil conflict, where they discuss electoral outcomes in Northern Ireland and Yugoslavia before and after significant institutional changes that affected the degree of centralization. These case studies provide support for the authors' theoretical predictions.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Peace Research Institute Oslo in its journal Journal of Peace Research.

Volume (Year): 45 (2008)
Issue (Month): 4 (July)
Pages: 557-573

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Handle: RePEc:sae:joupea:v:45:y:2008:i:4:p:557-573

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Web page: http://www.prio.no/

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  1. Lommerud, Kjell Erik, 1989. "Educational Subsidies When Relative Income Matters," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 41(3), pages 640-52, July.
  2. Andrew B. Abel, . "Asset Prices Under Habit Formation and Catching Up With the Jones," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 1-90, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
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  7. Tim Besley & Stephen Coate, . ""An Economic Model of Representative Democracy''," CARESS Working Papres 95-02, University of Pennsylvania Center for Analytic Research and Economics in the Social Sciences.
  8. R Dur & H.J. Roelfsema, 2004. "Why does centralisation fail to internalise policy externalities?," Working Papers 04-09, Utrecht School of Economics.
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  11. Gali, J., 1992. "Keeping Up with the Joneses: Consumption Externalities, Portfolio Choice and Asset Prices," Papers 92-22, Columbia - Graduate School of Business.
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  13. Yeung Lewis Chan & Leonid Kogan, 2002. "Catching Up with the Joneses: Heterogeneous Preferences and the Dynamics of Asset Prices," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(6), pages 1255-1285, December.
  14. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2000. "Economics And Identity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(3), pages 715-753, August.
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  16. Collier, Paul & Hoeffler, Anke, 1998. "On Economic Causes of Civil War," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 50(4), pages 563-73, October.
  17. Bill Dupor & Wen-Fang Liu, 2003. "Jealousy and Equilibrium Overconsumption," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 423-428, March.
  18. Grossman, Herschel I, 1991. "A General Equilibrium Model of Insurrections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 912-21, September.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Jennings, Colin, 2008. "Intra-Group Competition and Inter-Group Conflict: An Application to Northern Ireland," SIRE Discussion Papers 2008-30, Scottish Institute for Research in Economics (SIRE).
  2. Stefan Brandauer & Florian Englmaier, 2009. "A model of strategic delegation in contests between groups," Review of Economic Design, Springer, vol. 13(3), pages 205-232, September.
  3. R. Emre Aytimur & Aristotelis Boukouras & Robert Schwager, 2012. "The Citizen-Candidate Model with Imperfect Policy Control," CESifo Working Paper Series 3900, CESifo Group Munich.

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