Ethnic diversity, economic performance and civil wars
We develop a conflict model linking dissipation to the distribution of the population over an arbitrary number of groups. We extend the pure contest version of the model by Esteban and Ray (1999) to include a mixed public-private good. We analyze how the level of dissipation changes as the population distribution and the share of publicness of the prize change. First, we find that, in case of pure private goods, the dissipation-distribution relationship resembles the fractionalization index. This may explain the sensitiveness of empirical evidence on the impact of ethnic diversity with respect to outcome (growth, incidence of civil wars) and index (fractionalization, discrete polarization). Second, we find that, in case of pure private goods, smaller groups always contribute more and so the fractionalization index under-estimates their weight. Indeed, we find that the fractionalization index under-estimates the true level of dissipation.
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