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Do poverty and poor health and nutrition increase the risk of armed conflict onset?

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  • Pinstrup-Andersen, Per
  • Shimokawa, Satoru

Abstract

We analyze the effects of improving the economic, food security and health status on the risk of armed cotntectflict onset, focusing on the factors related to the millennium development goals. We employ the discrete-time hazard model that allows us to examine the time-varying effects of socioeconomic factors controlling for the reverse effect of conflict. Our results show that income poverty and poor health and nutritional status are more significantly associated with armed conflict onset than GDP per capita, annual GDP growth, and the ratio of primary commodity exports over GDP. In particular, poor health and nutritional status seems to play a key role in inducing armed conflicts in poor countries. These results indicate that, when a majority of the poor and the malnourished resides in rural areas and depends on agriculture directly or indirectly, investments in public goods for agriculture and rural areas can be effective tools to achieve the multiple goals of reduced poverty, food security and armed conflict, including riots in early 2008 triggered by high food prices. Food policy can be an effective element of efforts to maintain stability.

Suggested Citation

  • Pinstrup-Andersen, Per & Shimokawa, Satoru, 2008. "Do poverty and poor health and nutrition increase the risk of armed conflict onset?," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(6), pages 513-520, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jfpoli:v:33:y:2008:i:6:p:513-520
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Stijn van Weezel, 2016. "Communal violence in the Horn of Africa following the 1998 El Niño," Working Papers 201617, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
    2. Ana Luiza Cortez & Namsuk Kim, 2012. "Conflict and the identification of the Least Developed Countries: Theoretical and statistical considerations," CDP Background Papers 013, United Nations, Department of Economics and Social Affairs.
    3. Stijn van Weezel, 2017. "Communal violence in the Horn of Africa following the 1998 El Niño," HiCN Working Papers 241 updated, Households in Conflict Network.
    4. Astrid Sneyers, "undated". "Food, Drought and Conflict Evidence from a Case-Study on Somalia," HiCN Working Papers 252, Households in Conflict Network.
    5. De Jong, Joop T.V.M., 2010. "A public health framework to translate risk factors related to political violence and war into multi-level preventive interventions," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 70(1), pages 71-79, January.
    6. Berazneva, Julia & Lee, David R., 2013. "Explaining the African food riots of 2007–2008: An empirical analysis," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 28-39.
    7. Maystadt, Jean-François & Trinh Tan, Jean-François & Breisinger, Clemens, 2014. "Does food security matter for transition in Arab countries?," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 46(C), pages 106-115.
    8. D'Haese, Marijke F.C. & Speelman, Stijn & Vandamme, Ellen & Nkunzimana, Tharcisse & Ndimubandi, Jean & D'Haese, Luc, 2010. "Recovering from conflict: an analysis of food production in Burundi," 2010 AAAE Third Conference/AEASA 48th Conference, September 19-23, 2010, Cape Town, South Africa 96829, African Association of Agricultural Economists (AAAE);Agricultural Economics Association of South Africa (AEASA).

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