For Better and Worse: Border Fixity, State Capacity, and the Geography of War

51 Pages Posted: 5 Aug 2013

See all articles by Boaz Atzili

Boaz Atzili

American University - School of International Service

Joseph K. Young

American University; American University - School of International Service

Date Written: 2013

Abstract

Recent scholarship suggests interstate war is on the decline. In fact, some scholars claim that war is nearly obsolete. But is this decline universal? Using newly coded data, we show that the general decline in the phenomenon of interstate war is not evenly distributed across regions of the world. We argue that this geographic shift of warfare is impacted by the interaction of the international norm of border fixity, a proscription of the forceful conquest and annexation of homeland territory, and state capacity. We examine current scholarship on the issue and explore cases that demonstrate several mechanisms that link our explanation to the shifting geography of war.

Keywords: Interstate War, Borders, State Capacity

Suggested Citation

Atzili, Boaz and Young, Joseph K., For Better and Worse: Border Fixity, State Capacity, and the Geography of War (2013). APSA 2013 Annual Meeting Paper, American Political Science Association 2013 Annual Meeting, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2300237

Boaz Atzili (Contact Author)

American University - School of International Service ( email )

4400 Massachusetts Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20016
United States

Joseph K. Young

American University ( email )

School of Public Affairs
4400 Massachussetts Ave
Washington, DC 20016
United States

American University - School of International Service ( email )

4400 Massachusetts Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20016
United States

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