Ethnic polarization, potential conflict and civil wars
AbstractThis paper analyzes the relationship between ethnic fractionalization, polarization, and conflict. In recent years many authors have found empirical evidence that ethnic fractionalization has a negative effect on growth. One mechanism that can explain this nexus is the effect of ethnic heterogeneity on rent-seeking activities and the increase in potential conflict, which is negative for investment. However the empirical evidence supporting the effect of ethnic fractionalization on the incidence of civil conflicts is very weak. Although ethnic fractionalization may be important for growth, we argue that the channel is not through an increase in potential ethnic conflict. We discuss the appropriateness of indices of polarization to capture conflictive dimensions. We develop a new measure of ethnic heterogeneity that satisfies the basic properties associated with the concept of polarization. The empirical section shows that this index of ethnic polarization is a significant variable in the explanation of the incidence of civil wars. This result is robust to the presence of other indicators of ethnic heterogeneity, other sources of data for the construction of the index, and other data structures.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in its series Economics Working Papers with number 770.
Date of creation: Jul 2004
Date of revision: Mar 2005
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Web page: http://www.econ.upf.edu/
Ethnic diversity; conflict; indices of diversity;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances
- D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
- Z12 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Religion
- D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2004-12-12 (All new papers)
- NEP-MIC-2004-12-12 (Microeconomics)
- NEP-POL-2004-12-02 (Positive Political Economics)
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Blog mentionsAs found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
- Conflicts and Economic Development
by Dany Jaimovich - Bakary Baludin in Development Therapy on 2013-03-04 14:32:00
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