Reappraising the Greed and Grievance Explanations for Violent Internal Conflict
Two phenomena have been recently utilised to explain conflict onset among rational choice analysts: greed and grievance. The former reflects elite competition over valuable natural resource rents. The latter argues that relative deprivation and the grievance it produces fuels conflict. Central to grievance are concepts of inter-ethnic or horizontal inequality. Identity formation is also crucial to intra-state conflict, as it overcomes the collective action problem. Conflict can rarely be explained by greed alone, yet, the greed versus grievance hypotheses may be complementary explanations for conflict. The greed explanation for conflict duration and secessionist wars works best in cross-country studies, but has to make way for grievance-based arguments in quantitative country-case studies. Grievances and horizontal inequalities may be better at explaining why conflicts begin, but not necessarily why they persist. Neither the presence of greed or grievance is sufficient for the outbreak of violent conflict, something which requires institutional breakdown which we describe as the failure of the social contract. The degradation of the social contract is more likely in the context of poverty and growth failure. The paper provides a synthesis of the greed and grievance hypotheses, ending with comments on post-conflict reconstruction.
|Date of creation:||2007|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Brighton BN1 9RE|
Phone: +44 (0) 1273 606261
Fax: +44 (0) 1273 621202
Web page: http://www.microconflict.eu
More information through EDIRC
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:mcn:rwpapr:2. 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: (John Spall)
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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.