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Conflict and the identification of the Least Developed Countries: Theoretical and statistical considerations


  • Ana Luiza Cortez
  • Namsuk Kim


This paper reviews conflict as one of potential factors that could be incorporated in the identification of least developed countries (LDCs). It is not clear whether conflict can be considered as a structurally predetermined handicap as those identified in LDC criteria. More importantly, even if countries may be caught in a conflict trap, adding conflict indicators to the LDC criteria does not provide additional insights to enhance our understanding of the category . And adding conflict indicators is unlikely to introduce changes in country classification. Many of the factors associated with conflict are already incorporated in the indicators used to identify LDCs, and, therefore, the inclusion of an explicit conflict indicator ? to capture the risk of falling into conflict.

Suggested Citation

  • Ana Luiza Cortez & Namsuk Kim, 2012. "Conflict and the identification of the Least Developed Countries: Theoretical and statistical considerations," CDP Background Papers 013, United Nations, Department of Economics and Social Affairs.
  • Handle: RePEc:une:cpaper:013

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    7. Patrick Guillaumont, 2009. "Caught in a trap. Identifying the least developed countries," Post-Print hal-00436331, HAL.
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    9. Sakiko Fukuda-Parr & Maximillian Ashwill & Elizabeth Chiappa & Carol Messineo, 2011. "The Conflict–Development Nexus: A Survey of Armed Conflicts in Sub-Saharan Africa, 1980–2005," Chapters,in: Security and Development, chapter 5 Edward Elgar Publishing.
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    13. Christopher Cramer, 2003. "Does inequality cause conflict?," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 15(4), pages 397-412.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jose Antonio Alonso & Ana Luiza Cortez & Stephan Klasen, 2014. "LDC and other country groupings: How useful are current approaches to classify countries in a more hetergeneous developing world?," CDP Background Papers 021, United Nations, Department of Economics and Social Affairs.
    2. repec:gok:ijdcv1:v:7:y:2017:i:1:p:32-48 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item


    Conflict; Least Developed Countries; Country classification;

    JEL classification:

    • O19 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - International Linkages to Development; Role of International Organizations
    • D74 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Conflict; Conflict Resolution; Alliances; Revolutions
    • F35 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Foreign Aid

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