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Economic Aspects of Genocides, Other Mass Atrocities, and Their Preventions$
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Charles H. Anderton and Jurgen Brauer

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199378296

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199378296.001.0001

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Development and the Risk of Mass Atrocities

Development and the Risk of Mass Atrocities

An Assessment of the Empirical Literature

(p.230) 10 Development and the Risk of Mass Atrocities
Economic Aspects of Genocides, Other Mass Atrocities, and Their Preventions

Anke Hoeffler

Oxford University Press

This chapter surveys large-n studies on the correlates of mass atrocities with an emphasis on economic explanations. Since the overwhelming majority of mass atrocities (genocides, politicides, and mass killings) happen during civil war, it is unsurprising that civil war is a robust predictor of mass atrocities. In this context, violence against civilians can be interpreted as a strategic choice, where this choice is largely determined by the availability of economic resources. If state and nonstate actors have to rely on civilian support for resources, they are less likely to commit mass atrocities. In contrast, if armed organizations have access to funding from foreign governments or from the sale of natural resources, they are less dependent on civilian support that, in turn, may make violence against the local population more likely.

Keywords:   genocide, mass killing, development, income, democracy

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