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The Political Economy of Heterogeneity and Conflict

Author

Listed:
  • Enrico Spolaore
  • Romain Wacziarg

Abstract

We present a conceptual framework linking cultural heterogeneity to inter-group conflict. When conflict is about control of public goods, more heterogeneous groups are expected to fight more with each other. In contrast, when conflict is about rival goods, more similar groups are more likely to engage in war with each other. We formalize these ideas within an analytical model and discuss recent empirical studies that are consistent with the model's implications.

Suggested Citation

  • Enrico Spolaore & Romain Wacziarg, 2017. "The Political Economy of Heterogeneity and Conflict," NBER Working Papers 23278, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:23278
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    Cited by:

    1. Samuel Bazzi & Matthew Gudgeon, 2017. "The Political Boundaries of Ethnic Divisions," Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series WP2018-005, Boston University - Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions
    • H56 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - National Security and War
    • N40 - Economic History - - Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation - - - General, International, or Comparative

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