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Environmental Depletion, Governance, and Conflict

Horatiu A. Rus
Southern Economic Journal
Vol. 78, No. 4 (April 2012), pp. 1305-1332
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/41638854
Page Count: 28
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Environmental Depletion, Governance, and Conflict
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Abstract

While the link between natural resource dependence and internal conflict has been approached from a variety of angles in a large and growing interdisciplinary literature, the feasibility-discontent dichotomy still frames a fluid research agenda in both economics and political science. This article attempts to help bridge the gap by allowing for both intrinsic and extrinsic motivations of potential rebels. Simple non-cooperative bargaining yields a nonlinear impact of regulatory quality on the likelihood of conflict and shows that corruption and resource depletion jointly affect the outcome. The empirical analysis that follows looks at the effect of environmental depletion and government corruption on the emergence of civil conflicts using a large panel data set. Resource depletion, the quality of governance, and their interaction are found to be significant determinants of civil conflict incidence. Results are robust to model and specification as well as to several steps taken to address potential endogeneity concerns.

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