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An Economistic Interpretation of the Northern Ireland Conflict


  • Jennings, Colin C


Tullock (1971) argued that the cause of political rebellion is related more to private expected utility than collective discontent. There is much to suggest that secondary motivation plays a large part in the Northern Ireland conflict. Given the substantial amount of 'black market' activity which is present. This paper therefore puts forward a model of the NI paramilitaries blending their gangster and political activities which are commonly geared to earn revenue. From this model an explanation from an economic perspective emerges as to why a cease-fire may occur and why it is unstable. The implications of the model are then investigated, with particular reference to conflict solutions arising from the economic model rather than political diplomacy. Copyright 1998 by Scottish Economic Society.

Suggested Citation

  • Jennings, Colin C, 1998. "An Economistic Interpretation of the Northern Ireland Conflict," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 45(3), pages 294-308, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:scotjp:v:45:y:1998:i:3:p:294-308

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    JEL classification:

    • D70 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - General
    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions
    • D79 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Other


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