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The geography of inter-state resource wars

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  • Francesco Caselli
  • Massimo Morelli
  • Dominic Rohner

Abstract

We establish a theoretical as well as empirical framework to assess the role of resource endowments and their geographic location for inter-State conflict. The main predictions of the theory are that conflict tends to be more likely when at least one country has natural resources; when the resources in the resource-endowed country are closer to the border; and, in the case where both countries have natural resources, when the resources are located asymmetrically vis-a-vis the border. We test these predictions on a novel dataset featuring oilfield distances from bilateral borders. The empirical analysis shows that the presence and location of oil are significant and quantitatively important predictors of inter-State conflicts after WW2.

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File URL: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/51548/
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library in its series LSE Research Online Documents on Economics with number 51548.

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Length: 58 pages
Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:51548

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  1. Sylvain Chassang & Gerard Padro i Miquel, 2008. "Conflict and Deterrence under Strategic Risk," NBER Working Papers 13964, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Joan Esteban & Massimo Morelli & Dominic Rohner, 2010. "Strategic mass killings," IEW - Working Papers 486, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  3. Martin, Philippe & Mayer, Thierry & Thoenig, Mathias, 2005. "Make Trade not War?," CEPR Discussion Papers 5218, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Yu-Hsiang Lei & Guy Michaels, 2011. "Do Giant Oilfield Discoveries Fuel Internal Armed Conflicts?," CEP Discussion Papers dp1089, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
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  7. Massimo Morelli & Dominic Rohner, 2010. "Natural Resource Distribution and Multiple Forms of Civil War," Economics Working Papers ECO2010/33, European University Institute.
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  9. Mathias Thoenig & Fabrizio Zilibotti & Dominic Rohner, 2011. "War Signals: A Theory of Trade, Trust and Conflict," 2011 Meeting Papers 281, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  10. Skaperdas, S. & Syropoulos, C., 2000. "Guns, Butter, and Openness: On The Relationship Between Security and Trade," Papers 00-01-23, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
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  17. Anca Cotet & Kevin K. Tsui, 2010. "Oil and Conflict: What Does the Cross-Country Evidence Really Show?," Working Papers 201002, Ball State University, Department of Economics, revised Mar 2010.
  18. Timothy Besley & Torsten Persson, 2007. "The Origins of State Capacity: Property Rights, Taxation, and Politics," NBER Working Papers 13028, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Oeindrila Dube & Juan F. Vargas, 2013. "Commodity Price Shocks and Civil Conflict: Evidence from Colombia," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 80(4), pages 1384-1421.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Spolaore, Enrico & Wacziarg, Romain, 2013. "War and Relatedness," CAGE Online Working Paper Series 140, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
  2. Massimo Morelli & Dominic Rohner, 2013. "Resource Concentration and Civil Wars," Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) 13.08, Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP.
  3. Frederick van der Ploeg, 2012. "Resource Wars and Confiscation Risk," OxCarre Working Papers 097, Oxford Centre for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies, University of Oxford.
  4. Stefano DellaVigna & Ruben Enikolopov & Vera Mironova & Maria Petrova & Ekaterina Zhuravskaya, 2012. "Cross-border media and nationalism: Evidence from Serbian radio in Croatia," Working Papers w0189, Center for Economic and Financial Research (CEFIR).
  5. James Cust & Torfinn Harding, 2013. "Institutions and the Location of Oil Exploration," Economics Series Working Papers OxCarre Research Paper 12, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.

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