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Triggers and Characteristics of the 2007 Kenyan Electoral Violence

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  • Stefan Dercon
  • Roxana Gutiérrez-Romero

Abstract

Following the 2007 disputed Kenyan Presidential election unprecedented levels of violence erupted across the country adding to the history of troubled elections in Africa. This paper offers quantitative and qualitative evidence on the incidence, impacts and issues that triggered electoral violence. Using two surveys conducted before and after the election we find that one out of three Kenyans were affected by the violence regardless of their ethnicity and wealth. The chances of being a victim of violence were higher in areas with land conflicts and where politically-connected gangs operated. Violence, which was mainly triggered by the perception that the election had been rigged, reduced trust and social capital among communities making violence more likely to reoccur.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford in its series CSAE Working Paper Series with number 2010-12.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:csa:wpaper:2010-12

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Keywords: Voting; Electoral Violence; Rule of Law; Institutions; Africa; Kenya;

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Cited by:
  1. Mathias Thoenig & Fabrizio Zilibotti & Dominic Rohner, 2011. "War Signals: A Theory of Trade, Trust and Conflict," 2011 Meeting Papers 281, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. Roxana Gutiérrez-Romero, 2012. "An Inquiry into the Use of Illegal Electoral Practices and Effects of Political Violence," CSAE Working Paper Series 2012-16, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  3. Dupas, Pascaline & Robinson, Jonathan, 2012. "The (hidden) costs of political instability: Evidence from Kenya's 2007 election crisis," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 99(2), pages 314-329.
  4. Thomas Markussen & Kitavi Mbuvi, 2011. "When Does Ethnic Diversity Lead to Violence? Evidence from the 2007 Elections in Kenya," Discussion Papers 11-19, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  5. Roxana Gutierrez-Romero, 2012. "An Inquiry into the Use of Illegal Electoral Practices and Effects of Political Violence," Economics Series Working Papers WPF/2012-16, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.

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