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Does inequality make us rebel ? A renewed theoretical model applied to South Mexico

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  • Jean-François, MAYSTADT

    (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Department of Economics)

Abstract

Since Collier and Hoeffler (1998, 2004), it has been supported that inequality, measured at national level, does not affect the risk of conflict. Based on a renewed theoretical framework, the purpose of the paper is to explore the role of inequality in localized conflicts. We argue that previous findings might be biased by the myopic nature of cross-country analysis. Consistently with the model, Probit estimations indicate that income inequality measured at municipal level was significant in motivating people to support the rebellion in South Mexico. At this geographical level, we also find an increase in income per capita could exacerbate the risk of conflict in a situation where the rebel leader would have greater incentives to loot the local production compared to the opportunity cost associated with fighting for the worker.

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Paper provided by Université catholique de Louvain, Département des Sciences Economiques in its series Discussion Papers (ECON - Département des Sciences Economiques) with number 2007041.

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Length: 36
Date of creation: 01 Dec 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ctl:louvec:2007041

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Keywords: Rebellion; Inequality; Income; Mexico;

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  1. Rubin, Barnett R., 2000. "The Political Economy of War and Peace in Afghanistan," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(10), pages 1789-1803, October.
  2. Javier Sánchez-Reaza, 2002. "The Impact of Trade Liberalization on Regional Disparities in Mexico," Growth and Change, Gatton College of Business and Economics, University of Kentucky, vol. 33(1), pages 72-90.
  3. Roemer, John E, 1985. "Rationalizing Revolutionary Ideology," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(1), pages 85-108, January.
  4. Paul Collier & Anke Hoeffler, 2004. "Greed and grievance in civil war," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 56(4), pages 563-595, October.
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  8. Jack Hirshleifer, 1995. "Theorizing About Conflict," UCLA Economics Working Papers 727, UCLA Department of Economics.
  9. Collier, Paul & Hoeffler, Anke, 1998. "On Economic Causes of Civil War," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 50(4), pages 563-73, October.
  10. DESMET, Klaus & ORTUNO-ORTIN, Ignacio & WEBER, Shlomo, 2005. "Peripheral diversity and redistribution," CORE Discussion Papers 2005044, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
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  13. Hirshleifer, Jack, 1995. "Theorizing about conflict," Handbook of Defense Economics, in: Keith Hartley & Todd Sandler (ed.), Handbook of Defense Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 7, pages 165-189 Elsevier.
  14. 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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  19. repec:fth:oxesaf:98-8 is not listed on IDEAS
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