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The Impact of the Economic Costs of Conflict on Individuals' Political Attitudes

Ben Bassat Avi (), Momi Dahan (), Benny Geys and Esteban Klor ()
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Ben Bassat Avi: The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Peace Economics, Peace Science, and Public Policy, 2012, vol. 18, issue 2, 1-29

Abstract: A large number of studies show that war and terrorism have a significant effect on individuals’ political attitudes. Yet, this extensive literature does not inspect the mechanisms behind this effect. This paper concentrates on one possible mechanism, by differentiating between the human toll of terror and war and the economic costs they cause. For these purposes we focus on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and use variation in the level of violence across time and space together with localities’ different exposure to the tourism sector to estimate their respective effects on political attitudes. Our results suggest that whereas fatalities from the conflict make Israelis more willing to grant territorial concessions to the Palestinians, the associated economic costs of conflict do not have a consistent significant effect on individuals’ political attitudes.

Date: 2012
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