Disease Environment and Civil Conflicts
AbstractThis paper tests the hypothesis that a high and persistent exposure to infectious diseases increases the likelihood of civil conflicts. Diseases that are difficult to prevent and treat may reduce the opportunity costs of violent activities, both directly and indirectly. The analysis exploits new data on the number of multi-host vector-transmitted infectious diseases that are endemic in each country. As consequence of their specific features, the presence of these pathogens in a country is closely related to geo-climatological conditions and exogenous to civil conflict. The findings document that a larger disease richness is a statistically robust and quantitatively relevant determinant of civil conflicts for the period 1960-2004. Exploiting within country variation, the findings also document that interactions between climatological shocks in terms of droughts and the disease environment have a significant effect on the risk of civil wars. The results are robust to different specifications, data sets and estimation methods, and suggest that the persistent exposure to a more unfavorable environment in terms of disease richness is an important determinant of the incidence of civil conflict. The results also suggest the potential relevance of a channel linking geography to economic development that has not been investigated in the literature.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University of St. Gallen, School of Economics and Political Science in its series Economics Working Paper Series with number 1113.
Length: 56 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2011
Date of revision:
Disease Environment; Civil Conict; Multi-Host Vector-Transmitted Pathogens; Civil War;
Other versions of this item:
- D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances
- J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2011-04-30 (All new papers)
- NEP-DEV-2011-04-30 (Development)
- NEP-HEA-2011-04-30 (Health Economics)
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- Stelios Michalopoulos & Elias Papaioannou, 2011.
"The Long-Run Effects of the Scramble for Africa,"
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- Stelios Michalopoulos & Elias Papaioannou, 2011. "The Long-Run Effects of the Scramble for Africa," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 0762, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
- Michalopoulos, Stelios & Papaioannou, Elias, 2011. "The Long-Run Effects of the Scramble for Africa," CEPR Discussion Papers 8676, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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