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Peace Economics, Peace Science and Public Policy

Editor-in-Chief: Caruso, Raul

Ed. by Bove, Vincenzo / Kibris, Arzu / Sekeris, Petros

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Volume 24, Issue 2


Volume 17 (2011)

Volume 4 (1996)

Volume 3 (1995)

Volume 2 (1994)

Volume 1 (1993)

Food Insecurity and Conflict Events in Africa

Syed Mansoob Murshed
  • Corresponding author
  • International Institute of Social Studies (ISS), Erasmus University Rotterdam, Rotterdam, Netherlands
  • Coventry University, School of Economics, Finance and Accounting, Gosford Street, Coventry CV1 5FB, UK
  • Email
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Muhammad Badiuzzaman
  • International Institute of Social Studies (ISS), Erasmus University Rotterdam, Rotterdam, Netherlands
  • Centre for Peace and Justice, BRAC University, Dhaka, Bangladesh
  • Other articles by this author:
  • De Gruyter OnlineGoogle Scholar
/ Rashel Hasan
Published Online: 2018-04-30 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/peps-2018-0007


The aim of this paper is to examine the relationship between food insecurity and conflict events short of war in Africa, taking account of a host of mediating factors, including the degree of inequality, the level of development, democratic quality, quality of governance and the degree of government expenditure, which we incorporate into our analysis. Our results suggest that food price volatility does contribute significantly to conflict events measured by political events in Africa (ACLED). Greater democracy can engender more conflict, but in a non-linear fashion. The broader V-DEM participatory index of democracy also encourages more protest. Our governance variables are significant, emphasising the salience of state capacity in this regard. An innovation of our study is the inclusion of inequality. We deploy two metrics of vertical inequality: the GINI coefficient and the broader V-DEM egalitarian index. The GINI index of income inequality has a counter-intuitive statistically insignificant sign, suggesting that greater income equality or middle-class share of income results in greater political unrest. We also utilise political measures of inter-group horizontal inequality which significantly engender conflict risk.

Keywords: food price; conflict; institutions; government expenditure; inequality


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About the article

Published Online: 2018-04-30

Funding Source: Qatar National Research Fund

Award identifier / Grant number: NPRP 8-100-5-148

This paper was made possible by the NPRP award (NPRP 8-100-5-148) from the Qatar National Research Fund (a member of Qatar Foundation). The statements made herein are solely the responsibility of the authors.

Citation Information: Peace Economics, Peace Science and Public Policy, Volume 24, Issue 2, 20180007, ISSN (Online) 1554-8597, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/peps-2018-0007.

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