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War and peace—cyclical phenomena?


  • Adam Jacobsson



This paper demonstrates how the analysis can differ dramatically between two common modeling approaches to conflict. The first approach uses a one-period setup and associates positive investments in arms with conflict, see, for example, Skaperdas[1992]. The second approach has two periods, where arming decisions are taken in the first period, and the decision on wheter to go to war is taken separately in the second, see, for example, Brito and Intriligator [1985]. The second approach is then used to suggest a new possible explanation for the outbreak of war by showing how myopic players may end up in (Edgeworth) cycles of war and peace.
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Suggested Citation

  • Adam Jacobsson, 2009. "War and peace—cyclical phenomena?," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 141(3), pages 467-480, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:pubcho:v:141:y:2009:i:3:p:467-480
    DOI: 10.1007/s11127-009-9464-5

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Rafael Reuveny & John W. Maxwell, "undated". "Conflict and Renewable Resources," Working Papers 2004-26, Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, Department of Business Economics and Public Policy.
    2. Skaperdas, Stergios & Syropoulos, Constantinos, 1996. "Can the shadow of the future harm cooperation?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 355-372, May.
    3. Alesina, Alberto & Spolaore, Enrico, 2005. "War, peace, and the size of countries," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(7), pages 1333-1354, July.
    4. Hirshleifer, Jack, 1995. "Anarchy and Its Breakdown," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(1), pages 26-52, February.
    5. Maxwell, John W. & Reuveny, Rafael, 2005. "Continuing conflict," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 30-52, September.
      • John W. Maxwell & Rafael Reuveny, 2004. "Continuing Conflict," Working Papers 2004-27, Indiana University, Kelley School of Business, Department of Business Economics and Public Policy.
    6. Grossman, Herschel I, 1991. "A General Equilibrium Model of Insurrections," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 912-921, September.
    7. Gregory D. Hess & Athanasios Orphanides, 2001. "War and Democracy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 109(4), pages 776-810, August.
    8. Hausken, Kjell, 2000. "Cooperation and between-group competition," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 417-425, July.
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    Cited by:

    1. Antonis Adam & Petros G. Sekeris, 2010. "Self-Containment: Achieving Peace in Anarchic Settings," Working Papers 1014, University of Namur, Department of Economics.
    2. Giacomo De Luca & Petros G. Sekeris, 2013. "Deterrence in Contests," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 80(317), pages 171-189, January.

    More about this item


    Appropriative competition; Armed conflict; Cyclical behavior; D74; C72;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions


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