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Buying Peace: The Mirage of Demobilizing Rebels

  • Olivia D’Aoust

    ()

    (Université Libre de Bruxelles (SBS-EM, ECARES) and FNRS)

  • Olivier Sterck

    ()

    (UNIVERSITE CATHOLIQUE DE LOUVAIN, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES))

  • Philip Verwimp

    ()

    (Université libre de Bruxelles (SBS-EM, ECARES, Centre Emile Bernheim))

In 2009, hostilities were brought to an end in Burundi when the FNL rebel group laid down weapons. In exchange for peace, ex-rebels benefited from a disarmament, demobilization and reintegration (DDR) program to finance their return to civilian life. A few years earlier, another rebel group (CNDD-FDD) had gone through the same program. In this paper, we assess the impact of this complex program from a theoretical and an empirical viewpoint. First, we develop an agricultural model in order to predict the impact of demobilization cash transfers on beneficiary and non-beneficiary households. Then, we test the theoretical model by using a household panel dataset collected in rural Burundi. We find that, in the short run, the cash payments received by ex-combatants had a positive direct impact on purchases and investments of beneficiaries, as well as an indirect positive impact on non-beneficiaries. We also find that the direct and indirect impacts on purchases vanish in the long run. These results suggest that reinsertion grants may favour the acceptation of ex-combatants in their local communities in the short run, but are most likely not sufficient for peace to hold. More generally, it emphasizes the importance of considering spillovers in the evaluation of development programs.

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Paper provided by Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES) in its series Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) with number 2013009.

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Length: 59
Date of creation: 15 Apr 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ctl:louvir:2013009
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  1. Ciro Avitabile, 2011. "Spillover Effects in Healthcare Programs: Evidence on Social Norms and Information Sharing," CSEF Working Papers 271, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy, revised 14 Mar 2011.
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