DISEASE ENVIRONMENT AND CIVIL CONFLICT
Start date: Oct 1, 2013,
End date: Sep 30, 2017
"Civil conflicts are the most common warfare events during the last fifty years, account for the largest number of conflict-related casualties, and cause large social and economic disruption. In fact, civil conflicts represent one of the major correlates of economic backwardness in the world, with conflicts occurring predominantly in poorer countries. These observations raise the question about the potentially common causes of civil conflicts and economic development. During the past decade, an empirical literature emerged in economics that has investigated the socio-economic, institutional and geographic causes for the occurrence of civil conflicts. While much has been learnt about the determinants of conflict, many issues are not yet fully understood. For instance, why are conflicts so prevalent in countries with low life expectancy? Could weather shocks trigger civil war through a disease channel?The goal of this research project is to investigate the role of the disease environment as a new, so far largely overlooked, determinant of civil conflict. A better understanding of whether and through which channels the disease environment affects civil war will shed new light on the debate about civil conflict and economic development. This research project will bring new aspects to the forefront that have important implications for the prevalence of conflicts in the world that can be expected in the future, as well as for potential strategies to avoid conflicts. From a European perspective, the intended research is of particular importance, given the migratory pressure from Africa and the Arab world as consequence of civil conflict and a bleak economic outlook in many of these countries."
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