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The Economics of Coercion and Conflict: an Introduction

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  • Harrison, Mark

    (University of Warwick)

Abstract

This chapter introduces the author’s selected papers on the economics of coercion and conflict. It defines coercion and conflict and relates them. In conflict, adversaries make costly investments in the means of coercion. The application of coercion does not remove choice but limits it to options that leave the victim worse off than before. Coercion and conflict are always political, but a number of key concepts from economics can help us understand them. These include rational choice, strategic interaction, increasing and diminishing returns, scale and state capacity, surplus extraction, and Type I errors. The chapter concludes that the economist’s toolkit, although not complete, is useful.

Suggested Citation

  • Harrison, Mark, 2013. "The Economics of Coercion and Conflict: an Introduction," CAGE Online Working Paper Series 151, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
  • Handle: RePEc:cge:wacage:151
    as

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    File URL: http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/economics/research/centres/cage/manage/publications/151-2013_harrison.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Timothy Besley & Torsten Persson, 2009. "The Origins of State Capacity: Property Rights, Taxation, and Politics," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(4), pages 1218-1244, September.
    2. Stergios Skaperdas, 2011. "Policymaking in the Eurozone and the Core vs Periphery Problem," CESifo Forum, Ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, pages 12-18.
    3. Fearon, James D., 1995. "Rationalist explanations for war," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 49(03), pages 379-414, June.
    4. Mark Harrison & Nikolaus Wolf, 2014. "The Frequency of Wars," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: THE ECONOMICS OF COERCION AND CONFLICT, chapter 5, pages 121-149 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    5. Brennan, Geoffrey & Tullock, Gordon, 1982. "An economic theory of military tactics : Methodological individualism at war," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 3(2-3), pages 225-242.
    6. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2000. "Economics and Identity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 115(3), pages 715-753.
    7. Daniel Kahneman & Jack L. Knetsch & Richard H. Thaler, 1991. "Anomalies: The Endowment Effect, Loss Aversion, and Status Quo Bias," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 5(1), pages 193-206, Winter.
    8. Andrei Markevich, 2007. "How Much Control is Enough? Monitoring and Enforcement under Stalin," Working Papers w0110, Center for Economic and Financial Research (CEFIR).
    9. Edward L. Glaeser, 2005. "The Political Economy of Hatred," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(1), pages 45-86.
    10. Brauer, Jurgen & van Tuyll, Hubert, 2008. "Castles, Battles, and Bombs," University of Chicago Press Economics Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 0, number 9780226071633.
    11. Weingast, Barry R, 1995. "The Economic Role of Political Institutions: Market-Preserving Federalism and Economic Development," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 11(1), pages 1-31, April.
    12. repec:cup:apsrev:v:89:y:1995:i:04:p:841-855_09 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Garfinkel, Michelle R. & Skaperdas, Stergios & Syropoulos, Constantinos, 2015. "Trade and insecure resources," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, pages 98-114.
    14. Mark Harrison, 2006. "An Economist Looks at Suicide Terrorism," World Economics, World Economics, 1 Ivory Square, Plantation Wharf, London, United Kingdom, SW11 3UE, vol. 7(3), pages 1-15, July.
    15. Houghton, David Patrick, 1996. "The Role of Analogical Reasoning in Novel Foreign-Policy Situations," British Journal of Political Science, Cambridge University Press, vol. 26(04), pages 523-552, October.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Coercion; Conflict; Games; Errors; Increasing Returns; Rational Choice; Scale; Surplus; Violence.;

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