Article

Inequality, Polarization, and Conflict

Jose G. Montalvo and Marta Reynal-Querol

in The Oxford Handbook of the Economics of Peace and Conflict

Published in print April 2012 | ISBN: 9780195392777
Published online November 2012 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195392777.013.0008

Series: Oxford Handbooks

 Inequality, Polarization, and Conflict

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One would suspect that higher levels of inequality within a country tend to be associated with an increased likelihood of conflict. However, this article argues that there does not appear to be a clear correlation between measures of inequality and conflict. More promising appears to be a relationship between conflict and measures of polarization. This article reviews some basic theory and empirics that show the relationship between measures of polarization and conflict. It also presents a novel comparison of the effects on the level of fractionalization and polarization of using alternative datasets to calculate these indices.

Keywords: conflict; inequality; polarization measures; economic theory

Article.  9917 words. 

Subjects: Economics ; Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General ; Econometrics and Mathematical Economics

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