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Battlefields and Marketplaces

  • Halvor Mehlum

    (University of Oslo)

  • Karl Moene

    (University of Oslo)

Divided societies in the developing world experience wasteful struggles for power. We study the relationship between political stability and resources wasted in the struggle within a model of competitive power contests. The model of power contests is similar in structure to models describing oligopolistic market competition. This analogy helps us in deriving results that are new to the conflict literature. We show, for example, that the Herfindahl-Hirschman index can be interpreted as a measure of power concentration and that a peace treaty between fighting groups have a parallel in tacit collusion between firms in a market.

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File URL: http://econwpa.repec.org/eps/dev/papers/0210/0210001.pdf
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Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Development and Comp Systems with number 0210001.

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Length: 14 pages
Date of creation: 08 Oct 2002
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpdc:0210001
Note: Type of Document - pdf; prepared on latex; pages: 14
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://econwpa.repec.org

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  1. Cowling, Keith & Waterson, Michael, 1976. "Price-Cost Margins and Market Structure," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 43(171), pages 267-74, August.
  2. Nitzan, Shmuel, 1994. "Modelling rent-seeking contests," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 41-60, May.
  3. Jack Hirshleifer, 1995. "Theorizing About Conflict," UCLA Economics Working Papers 727, UCLA Department of Economics.
  4. 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.
  5. Hirshleifer, Jack, 1995. "Theorizing about conflict," Handbook of Defense Economics, in: Keith Hartley & Todd Sandler (ed.), Handbook of Defense Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 7, pages 165-189 Elsevier.
  6. Skaperdas, S., 1991. "Cooperation, Conflict And Power In The Absence Of Property Rights," Papers 90-91-06a, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
  7. Friedman, James W, 1971. "A Non-cooperative Equilibrium for Supergames," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(113), pages 1-12, January.
  8. Grossman, Herschel I, 1994. "Production, Appropriation, and Land Reform," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 705-12, June.
  9. Moene, K.O., 1992. "Contested Power," Memorandum 19/1992, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
  10. Friedman, James W, 1979. "Non-Cooperative Equilibria for Exit Supergames," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 20(1), pages 147-56, February.
  11. Salant, Stephen W & Switzer, Sheldon & Reynolds, Robert J, 1983. "Losses from Horizontal Merger: The Effects of an Exogenous Change in Industry Structure on Cournot-Nash Equilibrium," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 98(2), pages 185-99, May.
  12. Clark, Derek J & Riis, Christian, 1998. "Competition over More Than One Prize," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(1), pages 276-89, March.
  13. Hirshleifer, Jack, 1995. "Anarchy and Its Breakdown," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(1), pages 26-52, February.
  14. Tangerås, Thomas P. & Lagerlöf, Nils-Petter, 2002. "Ethnic Diversity and Civil War," Working Paper Series 589, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
  15. Keith Hartley & Todd Sandler, 2001. "Economics of Alliances: The Lessons for Collective Action," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(3), pages 869-896, September.
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