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Local conflict in Indonesia : Measuring incidence and identifying patterns

Author

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  • Barron, Patrick
  • Kaiser, Kai
  • Pradhan, Menno

Abstract

The widespread presence of local conflict characterizes many developing countries such as Indonesia. Outbreaks of violent conflict not only have direct costs for lives, livelihoods, and material property, but may also have the potential to escalate further. Recent studies on large-scale"headline"conflicts have tended to exclude the systematic consideration of local conflict, in large part due to the absence of representative data at low levels of geographic specification. This paper is a first attempt to correct for that. We evaluate a unique dataset compiled by the Indonesian government, the periodic Village Potential Statistics (PODES), which seeks to map conflict across all of Indonesia's 69,000 villages/neighborhoods. The data confirm that conflict is prevalent beyond well publicized"conflict regions,"and that it can be observed across the archipelago. The data report largely violent conflict in 7.1 percent of Indonesia's lowest administrative tier (rural desa and urban kelurahan). Integrating examples from qualitative fieldwork, we assess issues in the measurement of local conflict for quantitative analysis, and adopt an empirical framework to examine potential associations with poverty, inequality, shocks, ethnic and religious diversity/inequality, and community-level associational and security arrangements. The quantitative analysis shows positive correlations between local conflict and unemployment, inequality, natural disasters, changes in sources of incomes, and clustering of ethnic groups within villages. The institutional variables indicate that the presence of places of worship is associated with less conflict, while the presence of religious groups and traditional culture (adat) institutions are associated with conflict. We conclude by suggesting future areas of research, notably on the role of group inequality and inference, and suggest ways to improve the measurement of conflict in the village census.

Suggested Citation

  • Barron, Patrick & Kaiser, Kai & Pradhan, Menno, 2004. "Local conflict in Indonesia : Measuring incidence and identifying patterns," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3384, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:3384
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Jaideep Gupte & Patricia Justino & Jean-Pierre Tranchant, 2012. "Households amidst urban riots: The economic consequences of civil violence in India," HiCN Working Papers 126, Households in Conflict Network.
    2. Gabriela Guerrero-Serdán, 2009. "The Effects of the War in Iraq on Nutrition and Health: An Analysis Using Anthropometric Outcomes of Children," Royal Holloway, University of London: Discussion Papers in Economics 09/01, Department of Economics, Royal Holloway University of London.
    3. Baten, Joerg & Mumme, Christina, 2013. "Does inequality lead to civil wars? A global long-term study using anthropometric indicators (1816–1999)," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 56-79.
    4. Christopher Blattman & Edward Miguel, 2009. "Civil War: A Review of Fifty Years of Research," Working Papers id:2231, eSocialSciences.
    5. Hernando Zuleta & Juanita Villaveces, 2008. "Conflict and negotiation: a game theoretical approach," DOCUMENTOS DE TRABAJO 005148, UNIVERSIDAD DEL ROSARIO.
    6. Oeindrila Dube & Juan F. Vargas, 2006. "Resource Curse in Reverse: The Coffee Crisis and Armed Conflict in Colombia," Royal Holloway, University of London: Discussion Papers in Economics 06/05, Department of Economics, Royal Holloway University of London, revised Dec 2006.
    7. Patricia Justino, 2007. "Carrot or stick? Redistributive transfers versus policing in contexts of civil unrest," HiCN Working Papers 33, Households in Conflict Network.
    8. Mauricio A. Rodríguez & Nancy A. Daza, 2012. "Determinants of Civil Conflict in Colombia: How Robust are they?," Defence and Peace Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 23(2), pages 109-131, April.
    9. Giulia Lamattina, 2008. "Conflict Migration and Social Networks: Empirical Evidence from Sri Lanka," Rivista di Politica Economica, SIPI Spa, vol. 98(6), pages 161-194, November-.
    10. Christopher Blattman & Edward Miguel, 2010. "Civil War," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 48(1), pages 3-57, March.
    11. Mansoob Murshed & Zulfan Tadjoeddin, 2008. "Is Fiscal Decentralization Conflict Abating? Routine Violence and District Level Government in Java, Indonesia," Research Working Papers 7, MICROCON - A Micro Level Analysis of Violent Conflict.
    12. Suranjan Weeraratne, 2010. "Ethnic Entrepreneurs and Collective Violence: Assessing Spatial Variations in Anti- Chinese Rioting within Jakarta during the May 1998 Riots," WIDER Working Paper Series 055, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
    13. Zuleta, Hernando & Villaveces, Marta Juanita & Andonova, Veneta, 2013. "Conflict and negotiation in Colombia: Are pre-donations useful?," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 105-117.
    14. Madhav Joshi & Subodh Raj Pyakurel, 2015. "Individual-Level Data on the Victims of Nepal’s Civil War, 1996--2006: A New Data Set," International Interactions, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(3), pages 601-619, May.
    15. Juan Alberto Fuentes, 2005. "Violent Conflict and Human Development in Latin America: The Cases of Colombia, El Salvador and Guatemala," Human Development Occasional Papers (1992-2007) HDOCPA-2005-10, Human Development Report Office (HDRO), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
    16. Juan F. Vargas, 2012. "The persistent Colombian conflict: subnational analysis of the duration of violence," Defence and Peace Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 23(2), pages 203-223, April.
    17. Mathias Czaika & Krisztina Kis-Katos, 2009. "Civil Conflict and Displacement: Village-Level Determinants of Forced Migration in Aceh," Journal of Peace Research, Peace Research Institute Oslo, vol. 46(3), pages 399-418, May.
    18. Ali,Rubaba & Barra,Alvaro Federico & Berg,Claudia N. & Damania,Richard & Nash,John D. & Russ,Jason Daniel, 2015. "Infrastructure in conflict-prone and fragile environments : evidence from the Democratic Republic of Congo," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7273, The World Bank.
    19. Patricia Justino, 2009. "The Impact of Armed Civil Conflict on Household Welfare and Policy Responses," Research Working Papers 12, MICROCON - A Micro Level Analysis of Violent Conflict.
    20. Barron, Patrick & Diprose, Rachael & Woolcock, Michael, 2007. "Local conflict and development projects in Indonesia : part of the problem or part of a solution ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4212, The World Bank.
    21. Syed Mansoob Murshed & Mohammad Zulfan Tadjoeddin & Anis Chowdhury, 2009. "Is Fiscal Decentralization Conflict Abating? Routine Violence and District Level Government in Java, Indonesia," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(4), pages 397-421.
    22. Patricia Justino, 2006. "On the Links between Violent Conflict and Chronic Poverty: How Much Do We Really Know?," HiCN Working Papers 18, Households in Conflict Network.
    23. Oeindrila Dube & Juan F. Vargas, 2006. "Resource Curse in Reverse: The Coffee Crisis and Armed Conflict in Colombia," Royal Holloway, University of London: Discussion Papers in Economics 06/05, Department of Economics, Royal Holloway University of London, revised Dec 2006.
    24. Justino, Patricia, 2006. "The impact of collective action on economic development: empirical evidence from Kerala, India," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 34(7), pages 1254-1270, July.

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