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Natural Resource Distribution and Multiple Forms of Civil War

  • Massimo Morelli
  • Dominic Rohner

We examine how natural resource location, rent sharing and fighting capacities of different groups matter for ethnic conflict. A new type of bargaining failure due to multiple types of potential con.icts (and hence multiple threat points) is identified. The theory predicts conflict to be more likely when the geographical distribution of natural resources is uneven and when a minority group has better chances to win a secessionist rather than a centrist con.ict. For sharing rents, resource proportionality is salient in avoiding secessions and strength proportionality in avoiding centrist civil wars. We present empirical evidence that is consistent with the model.

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Paper provided by European University Institute in its series Economics Working Papers with number ECO2010/33.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:eui:euiwps:eco2010/33
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  1. Paul Collier & Anke Hoeffler & Dominic Rohner, 2006. "Beyond Greed and Grievance: Feasibility and Civil War," CSAE Working Paper Series 2006-10, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  2. Alesina, Alberto & Spolaore, Enrico, 1997. "On the Number and Size of Nations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1027-56, November.
  3. Daron Acemoglu, 2002. "Why Not a Political Coase Theorem? Social Conflict, Commitment and Politics," NBER Working Papers 9377, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Joan Esteban & Debraj Ray, 2011. "A Model Of Ethnic Conflict," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 9(3), pages 496-521, 06.
  5. Frederick van der Ploeg & Dominic Rohner, 2010. "War and natural resource exploitation," IEW - Working Papers 481, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  6. Angrist, Joshua & Kugler, Adriana D., 2005. "Rural Windfall or a New Resource Curse? Coca, Income and Civil Conflict in Colombia," CEPR Discussion Papers 5324, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  7. Joan Esteban & Debraj Ray, 2011. "Linking Conflict to Inequality and Polarization," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(4), pages 1345-74, June.
  8. Caselli, Francesco & Coleman II, Wilbur John, 2006. "On the Theory of Ethnic Conflict," CEPR Discussion Papers 5622, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Grossman, Herschel I. & Mendoza, Juan, 2003. "Scarcity and appropriative competition," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 747-758, November.
  10. Paul Collier & Dominic Rohner, 2008. "Democracy, Development, and Conflict," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 6(2-3), pages 531-540, 04-05.
  11. Joan Esteban & Massimo Morelli & Dominic Rohner, 2010. "Strategic mass killings," IEW - Working Papers 486, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  12. Fearon, James D., 1995. "Rationalist explanations for war," International Organization, Cambridge University Press, vol. 49(03), pages 379-414, June.
  13. Hodler, Roland, 2006. "The curse of natural resources in fractionalized countries," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(6), pages 1367-1386, August.
  14. Jackson, Matthew O. & Morelli, Massimo, . "Political bias and war," Working Papers 1247, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
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