EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

International Commodity Prices and Civil War Outbreak: New Evidence for Sub-Saharan Africa and Beyond

Antonio Ciccone

No 12625, CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers

Abstract: A new dataset by Bazzi and Blattman (2014) allows examining the effects of international commodity prices on the risk of civil war outbreak with more comprehensive data. I find that international commodity price downturns sparked civil wars in Sub-Saharan Africa. Another finding with the new dataset is that commodity price downturns also sparked civil wars beyond Sub-Saharan Africa since 1980. Effects are sizable relative to the baseline risk of civil war outbreak. My conclusions contrast with those of Bazzi and Blattman, who argue that the new dataset rejects that commodity price downturns cause civil wars. The reason is that I calculate commodity price shocks using time invariant (fixed) export shares as commodity weights. Bazzi and Blattman also calculate commodity price shocks using export shares as commodity weights but the exports shares they use are time varying. Using time-invariant export shares as commodity weights ensures that time variation in price shocks solely reflects changes in international commodity prices. Price shocks based on time varying export shares partly reflect (possibly endogenous) changes in the quantity and variety of countries' exports, which jeopardizes causal estimation. I also show that setting time-invariant export shares equal to average export shares over the sample period, can be a way of dealing with attenuation bias due to mismeasured export shares. When I differentiate between agricultural commodities on the one hand and minerals, oil, and gas on the other, I find stronger increases in the risk of civil war outbreak following downturns in agricultural commodity prices.

Keywords: civil wars; commodity price downturns (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: E3 O1 Q1 Q10 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-agr and nep-mac
Date: 2018-01
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (4) Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link)
http://www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=12625 (application/pdf)
CEPR Discussion Papers are free to download for our researchers, subscribers and members. If you fall into one of these categories but have trouble downloading our papers, please contact us at subscribers@cepr.org

Related works:
Working Paper: International Commodity Prices and Civil War Outbreak: New Evidence for Sub-Saharan Africa and Beyond (2018) Downloads
Working Paper: International Commodity Prices and Civil War Outbreak: New Evidence for Sub-Saharan Africa and Beyond (2018) Downloads
Working Paper: International commodity prices and civil war outbreak: new evidence for Sub-Saharan Africa and beyond (2018) Downloads
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:12625

Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from
http://www.cepr.org/ ... rs/dp.php?dpno=12625

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers Centre for Economic Policy Research, 33 Great Sutton Street, London EC1V 0DX.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by ().

 
Page updated 2019-10-21
Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:12625