Central Data Catalog

Citation Information

Type Working Paper - Households in Conflict Network (HiCN) Working Paper
Title Conflict and the Formation of Political Beliefs in Africa
Issue 164
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2014
URL http://www.hicn.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/HiCN-WP-164.pdf
We test whether living through conflict in childhood changes political beliefs and
engagement. We combine data on the location and intensity of conflicts since 1945 with
nationally representative data on political attitudes and behaviors from 17 sub-Saharan
African countries. Exposure from ages 0 to 14 has a very small standardized impact on later
attitudes and behaviors. This finding is robust to migration and holds across a variety of
definitions, specifications, and sources of data. Our results suggest that at the population
level in Africa, conflict does not alter political beliefs, though the most exposed subpopulations
may experience large, lasting effects.

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