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Political autonomy and independence: Theory and experimental evidence

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  • Klaus Abbink

    (University of East Anglia)

  • Jordi Brandts

    (Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona and Institut d'Analisi Economica)

Abstract

We study the process by which subordinated regions of a country can obtain a more favourable political status. In our theoretical model a dominant and a dominated region first interact through a voting process that can lead to different degrees of autonomy. If this process fails then both regions engage in a costly political conflict which can only lead to the maintenance of the initial subordination of the region in question or to its complete independence. In the subgame-perfect equilibrium the voting process leads to an intermediate arrangement acceptable for both parts. Hence, the costly political struggle never occurs. In contrast, in our experiments we observe a large amount of fighting involving high material losses, even in a case in which the possibilities for an arrangement without conflict are very salient.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by School of Economics, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK. in its series Working Paper series, University of East Anglia, Centre for Behavioural and Experimental Social Science (CBESS) with number 09-12.

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Date of creation: 01 Jan 2009
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Handle: RePEc:uea:wcbess:09-12

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Related research

Keywords: secession; collective action; independence movements; laboratory experiments; rent-seeking;

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Libman, Alexander, 2011. "Words or deeds – what matters? Experience of recentralization in Russian security agencies," MPRA Paper 29197, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Ke, Changxia & Konrad, Kai A. & Morath, Florian, 2012. "Alliances in the shadow of conflict," Discussion Papers, Research Professorship & Project "The Future of Fiscal Federalism" SP II 2012-104, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
  3. Michael McBride & Stergios Skaperdas, 2009. "Conflict, Settlement, and the Shadow of the Future," Working Papers 080922, University of California-Irvine, Department of Economics.
  4. Lacomba, Juan A. & Lagos, Francisco & Reuben, Ernesto & van Winden, Frans, 2014. "On the escalation and de-escalation of conflict," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 86(C), pages 40-57.
  5. Libman, Alexander Mikhailovich, 2009. "Эндогенные Границы И Распределение Власти В Федерациях И Международных Сообществах
    [ENDOGENOUS BOUNDARIES AND DISTRIBUTION O
    ," MPRA Paper 16473, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. Klaus Abbink & David Masclet & Daniel Mirza, 2012. "Inequality and Inter-group Conflicts – Experimental Evidence," Economics Working Paper from Condorcet Center for political Economy at CREM-CNRS 2012-07-ccr, Condorcet Center for political Economy.

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