IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/cid/wpfacu/115.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Political Insecurity and State Failure in Contemporary Africa

Author

Listed:
  • Robert H. Bates

Abstract

Noting data that suggests that Africa oversupplies state failure, the paper probes the sources of political insecurity in the continent. It explores the logic that underlies an equilibrium in which governments employ force to protect rather than to predate and in which citizens engage in productive activity and refrain from military activity. It isolates the variables that define the region in which this conduct is in equilibrium values that lie outside that region define the conditions under which states fail. The analysis illuminates the impact of political and economic forces in contemporary Africa: political reform, economic collapse, and the increased relative importance of “loot-able” resources. In an effort to evaluate the arguments of the paper, it provides as well a series of statistical tests of its arguments.

Suggested Citation

  • Robert H. Bates, 2005. "Political Insecurity and State Failure in Contemporary Africa," CID Working Papers 115, Center for International Development at Harvard University.
  • Handle: RePEc:cid:wpfacu:115
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.hks.harvard.edu/var/ezp_site/storage/fckeditor/file/pdfs/centers-programs/centers/cid/publications/faculty/wp/115.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Robert Bates & Avner Greif & Smita Singh, 2002. "Organizing Violence," Journal of Conflict Resolution, Peace Science Society (International), vol. 46(5), pages 599-628, October.
    2. Skaperdas, Stergios, 1992. "Cooperation, Conflict, and Power in the Absence of Property Rights," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(4), pages 720-739, September.
    3. Azam, Jean-Paul & Mesnard, Alice, 2003. "Civil War and the Social Contract," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 115(3-4), pages 455-475, June.
    4. Block, Steven A., 2002. "Political business cycles, democratization, and economic reform: the case of Africa," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 205-228, February.
    5. repec:cup:apsrev:v:90:y:1996:i:04:p:715-735_20 is not listed on IDEAS
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Delfin Go & Denis Nikitin & Xiongjian Wang & Heng-fu Zou, 2007. "Poverty and Inequality in Sub-Saharan Africa: Literature Survey and Empirical Assessment," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 8(2), pages 251-304, November.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    development; Africa; political economy; institutions; conflict;

    JEL classification:

    • O19 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - International Linkages to Development; Role of International Organizations
    • P48 - Economic Systems - - Other Economic Systems - - - Political Economy; Legal Institutions; Property Rights; Natural Resources; Energy; Environment; Regional Studies
    • P51 - Economic Systems - - Comparative Economic Systems - - - Comparative Analysis of Economic Systems
    • E66 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - General Outlook and Conditions

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cid:wpfacu:115. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Chuck McKenney). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/ciharus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.