Constitution or Conflict?
AbstractA self-enforcing constitution creates a political process that provides an alternative to civil conflict for resolving disputes among the constituent groups of the polity. This paper is concerned with discovering the conditions under which it is possible to design such a self-enforcing constitution. The paper is also concerned with discovering generic features of a self-enforcing constitution. The analysis yields the following theoretical propositions: If and only if (1) none of the parties to a dispute regards the dispute to be too important relative to the expected incremental cost of civil conflict and (2) no party has too big of an advantage in civil conflict, then the parties are able to resolve a dispute constitutionally. Also, under a constitution that is self enforcing the outcomes of constitutional contests for political power do not matter too much. The paper illustrates the relevance of the theoretical analysis by applying these propositions to two dramatic historical examples of constitutional failure: the secession of eleven Southern states from the Union in 1861 and the National Socialist revolution in Germany in 1933.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Brown University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 2002-01.
Date of creation: 2002
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Department of Economics, Brown University, Providence, RI 02912
Other versions of this item:
- D7 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2003-04-21 (All new papers)
- NEP-CDM-2003-04-21 (Collective Decision-Making)
- NEP-HPE-2003-04-21 (History & Philosophy of Economics)
- NEP-LAM-2003-04-21 (Central & South America)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Fortin, Pierre & Keil, Manfred & Symons, James, 2001. "The Sources of Unemployment in Canada, 1967-91: Evidence from a Panel of Regions and Demographic Groups," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 53(1), pages 67-93, January.
- Daron Acemoglu & James A. Robinson, 2001.
"A Theory of Political Transitions,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 91(4), pages 938-963, September.
- Acemoglu, Daron & Robinson, James A, 1999. "A Theory of Political Transitions," CEPR Discussion Papers 2277, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Daron Acemoglu & James Robinson, 1999. "A Theory of Political Transitions," Working papers 99-26, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
- Colin Jennings, 2007.
"Political Leadership, Conflict and the Prospects for Constitutional Peace,"
Economics of Governance,
Springer, vol. 8(1), pages 83-94, January.
- Jennings, Colin, 2007. "Political leadership, conflict, and the prospects for constitutional peace," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4196, The World Bank.
- Kumar, Vikas, 2011.
"Negotiating constitutions for political unions,"
International Review of Law and Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 58-76, March.
- Vikas Kumar, 2008. "Negotiating Constitution for Political Unions," Working Papers id:1797, eSocialSciences.
- Vikas Kumar, 2008. "Negotiating Constitution for Political Unions," Microeconomics Working Papers 22386, East Asian Bureau of Economic Research.
- Vikas Kumar, 2008. "Negotiating constitution for political unions," Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai Working Papers 2008-026, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai, India.
- Herschel I. Grossman, 2003.
"...and six hundred thousand men were dead,"
2003-13, Brown University, Department of Economics.
- Herschel I. Grossman, 2003. "Choosing Between Peace and War," NBER Working Papers 10180, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Balla, Eliana & Reinhardt, Gina Yannitell, 2008. "Giving and Receiving Foreign Aid: Does Conflict Count?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 36(12), pages 2566-2585, December.
- Herschel Grossman, 2003.
"Distributional Disputes and Civil Conflict,"
Latin American Journal of Economics-formerly Cuadernos de Economía,
Instituto de Economía. Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile., vol. 40(121), pages 608-616.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Brown Economics Webmaster).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.