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The impact of cultural heterogeneity on violence in Indonesia: fractionalisation versus polarisation

Citation

Sanjaya, MR and Chuah, SH and Feeny, S and Hoffmann, R, The impact of cultural heterogeneity on violence in Indonesia: fractionalisation versus polarisation, Applied Economics ISSN 0003-6846 (2022) [Refereed Article]


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DOI: doi:10.1080/00036846.2022.2099800

Abstract

The determinants of large-scale conflict have been examined extensively in the academic literature. The factors contributing to everyday violence have received less attention despite this smaller-scale conflict having a high human and economic cost. We analyse a dataset at the level of 495 Indonesian districts to estimate the determinants of non-domestic, small-scale violence prevalent in this nation. We focus on the role of pronounced cultural heterogeneity that characterizes Indonesia and contribute to the literature by empirically testing whether established conflict theory holds for smaller scale violence data in the case of Indonesia. Ethnic polarization (rather than fractionalization) is the main driver of conflict intensity, suggesting that district-level conflicts are commonly over public goods. Cultural heterogeneity has a curvilinear effect on conflict. It increases the intensity of violence up to a point, after which the level decreases. Overall, our results offer some support for the Esteban and Ray model of conflict.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Indonesia, conflict, violence, cultural diversity
Research Division:Economics
Research Group:Applied economics
Research Field:Applied economics not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Economic Framework
Objective Group:Microeconomics
Objective Field:Preference, behaviour and welfare
UTAS Author:Chuah, SH (Professor Swee-Hoon Chuah)
ID Code:151262
Year Published:2022
Deposited By:Economics
Deposited On:2022-07-26
Last Modified:2022-07-26
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