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- A Theory Of Religious Conflict And Its Effect On Growth


  • José García-Montalvo

    (Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas)

  • Marta Reynal-Querol

    (Instituto de Análisis Económico (IAE))


This paper analyzes the role of religious conflict in the process of development of a country. We construct an index of religious polarization using data on the proportions of each religion in a country. The index of polarization is an alternative to the usual fragmentation index. We argue that for the case of religious conflict the fragmentation index is less appropriate than the polarization measure. We include the religious polarization index in a growth regression specification to determine the effect of religious conflicts on growth. The main finding is that religious conflict is an important factor in explaining economic growth and it is also an important explanation for the so called ¿Africa¿s growth tragedy¿. Moreover, religious polarization has a larger explanatory power on growth than ethnolinguistic and and religious fragmentation. Este trabajo analiza el papel de los conflictos religiosos en el desarrollo de un país. Hemos construido un índice de polarización religiosa utilizando los datos de proporción de cada religión en un país. El índice de polarización es una alternativa al habitual índice de fragmentación. Sostenemos que para el caso de conflictos religiosos, el índice de fragmentación es menos apropiado que el de polarización. Incluimos el índice de polarización religiosa en una regresión de crecimiento para determinar el efecto de los conflictos religiosos sobre el crecimiento. El resultado principal es que el conflicto religioso es un factor importante al explicar el crecimiento económico y también al explicar la llamada 'tragedia del crecimiento de África'. Además, la polarización religiosa tiene mayor poder explicativo sobre el crecimiento que la fragmentación etnolingüística y religiosa.

Suggested Citation

  • José García-Montalvo & Marta Reynal-Querol, 2000. "- A Theory Of Religious Conflict And Its Effect On Growth," Working Papers. Serie EC 2000-04, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
  • Handle: RePEc:ivi:wpasec:2000-04

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Levine, Ross & Renelt, David, 1992. "A Sensitivity Analysis of Cross-Country Growth Regressions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(4), pages 942-963, September.
    2. Paolo Mauro, 1995. "Corruption and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(3), pages 681-712.
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    Cited by:

    1. Oguzhan C. Dincer & Peter J. Lambert, 2006. "Taking care of your own: Ethnic and religious heterogeneity and income inequality," Working Papers 48, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.


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