Social Cooperation and the Problem of the Conflict Gap: Survey and Experimental Evidence from Post-War Tajikistan
Our research provides experimental and survey evidence on the pro-social behavior (trust, reciprocity, a sense of fairness) and preferences for anonymous market transactions of former combatants. Our results, from a random sample in post-war Tajikistan, show that trust, reciprocity, generosity (dictator giving) are lowest among those respondents reporting having fought during the 1992-1997 Tajik civil war or anytime since its end, especially when the experimental treatment matches individuals with anonymous others from their local community. Consistent with the behavioral results, fighting is associated with lower trust towards any group outside the direct family, a lower willingness to engage in impersonal exchange and stronger kinship-based norms of morality. Replicating previous literature results, we find that ex-combatants are more likely to participate in groups and collective action but we caution that this may just capture political opposition, just as participating in combat did. Overall, our results point to a lasting “conflict gap” between combatants and non-combatants, even long after the end of the civil war, which question the rehabilitation of combatants.
|Date of creation:||Oct 2011|
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