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Aiding Conflict: The Impact of U.S. Food Aid on Civil War

  • Nathan Nunn
  • Nancy Qian

This paper examines the effect of U.S. food aid on conflict in recipient countries. To establish a causal relationship, we exploit time variation in food aid caused by fluctuations in U.S. wheat production together with cross-sectional variation in a country's tendency to receive any food aid from the United States. Our estimates show that an increase in U.S. food aid increases the incidence, onset and duration of civil conflicts in recipient countries. Our results suggest that the effects are larger for smaller scale civil conflicts. No effect is found on interstate warfare.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 17794.

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Date of creation: Jan 2012
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Publication status: published as “U.S. Food Aid and Civil Conflict,” (with Nancy Qian), American Economic Review, forthcoming.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17794
Note: DAE EFG ITI PE POL
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