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Fractionalization and the Fight over Natural Resources: Ethnicity, language, religion, and the onset of civil war

  • Christa N Brunnschweiler
  • Erwin H Bulte

We use three different measures of fractionalization (with varying potential for members of one fraction to “mendaciously” pass for a member of another) to revisit the correlation between natural resources and the onset of conflict. The combination of ethnic fractionalization and resource wealth seems to translate into a greater risk of war, but the same is not true for linguistic and religious fractionalization. This is consistent with the “greed hypothesis” as a driver of conflict. However, we also find that the direct effect of resource wealth tends to attenuate the risk of war, and the net effect of resources on conflict is ambiguous.

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File URL: http://www.oxcarre.ox.ac.uk/images/stories/papers/ResearchPapers/oxcarrerp200917.pdf
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Paper provided by Oxford Centre for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies, University of Oxford in its series OxCarre Working Papers with number 017.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:oxf:oxcrwp:017
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  1. Habyarimana, James P. & Humphreys, Macartan & Posner, Daniel N. & Weinstein, Jeremy, 2006. "Why Does Ethnic Diversity Undermine Public Goods Provision? An Experimental Approach," IZA Discussion Papers 2272, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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