foreign policy analysis
Forecasting, Political Institutions, Political Conflict

Conditional Relationships Between Drought and Civil Conflict in Sub-Saharan Africa

Author(s): Curtis Bell, Patrick W. Keys
Date: August 15, 2016
Publication Type: Journal Article
Keywords:

Overview:

Few cross-national studies provide evidence of a relationship between environmental scarcity and conflict, although much of the literature claims that destabilizing effects of environmental crises can be mitigated by the right sociopolitical conditions. The authors analyzed drought severity and civil conflict in sub-Saharan Africa from 1962 to 2006 and uncovered some surprising results based on which and when sociopolitical conditions influenced the link between scarcity and conflict.

Key Findings:

  • Three sociopolitical conditions influence the link between environmental scarcity and civil conflict: social vulnerability, state capacity, and unequal distribution of resources.
  • Drought does not increase risk of conflict in states thought to be especially vulnerable to scarcity.
  • States with sociopolitical conditions that would favor peace are no less likely to suffer conflict during severe drought than other states.
  • Environmental scarcity is more likely to increase conflict risk where populations have more to lose in comparison to times of more favorable climate conditions.

Related Publications

Improving effectiveness in deterring piracy

The Systematic Prosecution of Somali Pirate Leadership and the Primacy of Multi-Level Cooperation

Jonathan Bellish Written by Jonathan Bellish on August 15, 2014

Since 2010, well over $100 million has been spent on investigating, prosecuting, and imprisoning pirates operating off the Horn of Africa. These efforts have been subject to two related criticisms.

Read more
R2PK Cover

The Role of Kenya's Private Sector in Peacebuilding: The Case of the 2013 Election Cycle

Written by Victor Odundo Owuor, Scott Wisor on June 9, 2014

Following the disputed presidential election results in 2007- 08, widespread violence engulfed Kenya, killing over one thousand people and displacing hundreds of thousands. One in three Kenyans were directly affected by the violence.

Read more
The ICC and Nonviolent Crimes Against Humanity

Improving Global Accountability: The ICC and Nonviolent Crimes Against Humanity

One Earth Future Written by One Earth Future on May 9, 2014

The journal Global Constitutionalism published an article by Eamon Aloyo in its November 2013 issue entitled, “Improving Global Accountability: The ICC and Nonviolent Crimes Against Humanity.”Aloyo’s article represents the view that some nonviolent

Read more
Global Governance Philadelphia

Global Governance: “A Philadelphia Moment”?

Thomas G. Weiss Written by Thomas G. Weiss on May 7, 2014

An obvious puzzle for friends and foes of international cooperation is how to explain why order, stability, and predictability exist despite the lack of a central authority to address the planet’s problems.

Read more
State of Maritime Piracy 2013

The State of Maritime Piracy 2013

Written by Conor Seyle, Jens Vestergaard Madsen, Kellie Brandt, Ben Purser, Heather Randall, Kellie Roy on May 7, 2014

Oceans Beyond Piracy has launched the fourth installment of its annual reports detailing the economic and human costs of African maritime piracy.

Read more
Common Framework NGOs Report

A Common Framework for Understanding Non-state Organizations

Written by Lindsay Heger, Danielle Jung, Sarah Stroup, Wendy Wong on May 1, 2014

This paper serves as an introduction to conceptualizations of non-state organizations (NSOs) and, in particular, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), multinational corporations
Read more
Understanding Governance

Understanding Governance, State of the World 2014 report

Written by Conor Seyle, Matthew Wilburn King on April 29, 2014

"Understanding Governance" is Chapter 2 in the State of the World 2014: Governing for Sustainability by The Worldwatch Institute.

Read more
Reducing Armed Violence

Reducing Armed Violence with NGO Governance

One Earth Future Written by One Earth Future on April 3, 2014

A series of workshops convened by the One Earth Future Foundation and Rodney Bruce Hall (Oxford University) on the topic of the roles NGOs can play in contributing to peace and good governance resulted in the book Reducing Armed Violence with NGO

Read more

Pages