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The Social Benefit of War

  • Hoffmann, Magnus
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    Recent findings in economic theory show that cooperation (settlement) between two identical players with conflicting interests in a valuable and contestable resource always Pareto dominates violent dispute (war), given that cooperation is presented using a symmetric bargaining norm. Necessary conditions for settlement to arise are the destructibility of war, and the costless and exogenous enforcement of any agreement made by the two players. We show that endogenous enforcement of the agreements alters the incentives of the players to bargain. This causes a shift in the Pareto frontier so that - under certain conditions - war Pareto dominates settlement.

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    Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 6196.

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    Date of creation: Oct 2007
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    Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:6196
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    1. Anbarci, N. & Skaperdas, S. & Syropoulos, C., 2000. "Comparing Bargaining Solutions in the Shadow of Conflict: How Norms Against Threats Can Have Real Effects," Papers 00-01-19, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
    2. Daron Acemoglu & Jorn-Steffen Pischke, 1999. "The Structure of Wages and Investment in General Training," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(3), pages 539-572, June.
    3. Michelle R Garfinkel & Stergios Skaperdas, 2001. "Conflict Without Misperceptions or Incomplete Information: How the Future Matters," Levine's Working Paper Archive 563824000000000011, David K. Levine.
    4. Michael McBride & Stergios Skaperdas, 2005. "Explaining Conflict in Low-Income Countries: Incomplete Contracting in the Shadow of the Future," CESifo Working Paper Series 1636, CESifo Group Munich.
    5. Herschel I. Grossman, 2001. "The Creation of Effective Property Rights," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 347-352, May.
    6. Cai Hongbin, 2003. "War or Peace," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 2(1), pages 1-28, February.
    7. McDonald, Ian M & Solow, Robert M, 1981. "Wage Bargaining and Employment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(5), pages 896-908, December.
    8. Garfinkel, Michelle R, 1990. "Arming as a Strategic Investment in a Cooperative Equilibrium," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(1), pages 50-68, March.
    9. Grossman, Herschel I & Kim, Minseong, 1995. "Swords or Plowshares? A Theory of the Security of Claims to Property," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(6), pages 1275-88, December.
    10. Kalai, Ehud & Smorodinsky, Meir, 1975. "Other Solutions to Nash's Bargaining Problem," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 43(3), pages 513-18, May.
    11. Crawford, Vincent P, 1981. "Arbitration and Conflict Resolution in Labor-Management Bargaining," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(2), pages 205-10, May.
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