Mobility and Conflict
41 Pages Posted: 25 Jan 2012
Date Written: January 23, 2012
We study the role of inter-group differences in the emergence of conflict. In our setting, two groups compete for the right to allocate society's resources, and we allow for costly inter-group mobility. The winning group offers an allocation, that the opposition can either accept, or reject and wage conflict. Expropriating a large share of resources increases political strength by attracting opposition members, but such economic exclusion implies lower per capita shares and higher risk of conflict. In equilibrium, allocations are non-monotonic in the cost of mobility. Moreover, limited commitment with respect to mobility gives rise to inefficient conflict in equilibrium.
Keywords: conflict, inter-group mobility, political competition, resource allocation
JEL Classification: D72, D74, D78, P48
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