October 13, 2021
Are diverse societies prone to conflict?
Does ethnic diversity in a country increase the likelihood of conflict?
Is there something about ethnicity that makes conflict more likely?
Many variations, with some differences:
modernization of economy and government creates new goods and services.
(Bates 1983, Horowitz 1985, pp 99-105)
Ethnicity may produce conflict because either:
Horowtiz (pp 105-109)
Conflict can be the result of ethnic groups seeking to raise their relative status:
Horowitz (pp. 141-184)
Different explanations for why ethnicity may be linked to conflict:
First major attempt to answer:
Examine 161 countries between 1945 and 1999
Think about how we’ve defined ethnicity in previous weeks…
Discuss with your neighbors:
If we want to compare countries around the world… how might we measure ethnic diversity?
Comparing countries with differing levels of ethnic diversity, they find that…
Two ways of responding to Fearon and Laitin’s findings:
Measurement: Does the measurement of ethnic diversity make sense?
Theory: Ethnic diversity as such does not lead to conflict. Particular types of ethnic configurations produce conflict
Where \(s_i\) is fraction of population for group \(i \in \lbrace 1 \ldots n \rbrace\)
Interpret as: probability that any two random individuals belong to different ethnic groups
Measure size \(s\) of ethnic groups \(1 \ldots n\) using
Can you think of any potential objections to this approach?
Finding that ethnic diversity does not correlate with conflict does not imply no link between ethnicity and conflict
Instead of diversity as such, what might matter is:
Overall, well done! Mean of 77.7% (B+)