Jump to Navigation

Development and Conflict Research (DACOR)

Project Background

Publications and Papers

Conferences and Workshops

Media Mentions

IGCC Research Director Eli Berman and his partners have undertaken a broad program of theoretical, empirical, and field research studying terrorism, insurgency, governance, and development. They address two core questions. First, how does development reduce political violence? Second, how should development programs be designed in environments where projects and people are at risk of violent capture? Research is conducted in key locations around the world including Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Northern Ireland, the Philippines, and the Palestinian Territories. Members of the team have developed and tested theories that can form the building blocks of an integrated theory of political violence, governance, and development. DACOR is multidisciplinary, bringing together economists, political scientists, military, and development practitioners.

This research program is training and supporting graduate students and young researchers in the rapidly growing research fields of political and economic development in conflict and post-conflict environments. Postdoctoral scholars for the 2012–2013 academic year were Michael Callen and Aila Matanock. Visiting scholar Gerard Padró i Miquel was hosted spring 2013 and 2015.

Berman and his team are also part of the Empirical Studies of Conflict Project (ESOC), which developed an open-source website devoted to compiling micro-data and analysis on insurgency, civil war, and other politically motivated violence around the world. This Google Scholar link lists many of the publications written by members of the ESOC team, including some of those listed below.

Publications and Working Papers

Eli Berman and Aila Matanock. "The Empiricists' Insurgency." Working Paper, April 2015.

Eli Berman, Joseph Felter, and Jacob Shapiro. "The Super Smart Way to Dismantle ISIS.The National Interest online.  

Eli Berman, Joseph H. Felter, Ethan Kapstein, and Erin Troland. "Predation, Taxation, Investment, and Violence: Evidence from the Philippines." Working Paper, October 2014.

Jesse Driscoll and Nicholai Lidow. “Representative Surveys in Insecure Environments: A Case Study of Mogadhishu, Somalia.” Journal of Survey Statistics and Methodology (2014) 2 (1): 78-95.

Michael Callen, Mohammad Isaqzadeh, James D. Long and Charles Sprenger. “Violent Trauma and Risk Preference: Artefactual and Experimental Evidence from Afghanistan.” American Economic Review 104(1): 123-48. 

Eli Berman, Joseph H. Felter, Jacob N. Shapiro, and Erin Troland. “Modest, Secure and Informed: Successful Development in Conflict Zones.” American Economic Review: Papers and Proceedings 103(3): 512-17.  Longer version as NBER Working Paper 18674

Daniel Egel. Tribal Heterogeneity and the Allocation of Development Resources: Evidence from YemenJournal of Development Economics  101 (March 2013): 228–232.

Lindsay Heger, Danielle Jung, and Wendy Wong. “Organizing for Resistance: How Group Structure Impacts the Character of Violence.”Terrorism and Political Violence 24, No. 5 (2012): 743-768.

Eli Berman. Research Note: Why Ungoverned Space? September 2012.

Nils B. Weidmann and Michael Callen. Violence and Election Fraud: Evidence from AfghanistanBritish Journal of Political Science. (August 2012): 1-23.

Tiffany Chou. “Does Development Assistance Reduce Violence? Evidence from Afghanistan.” Economics of Peace and Security Journal  7, No. 2 (July 2012).

Nicholai Hart Lidow. Violent Order: Rebel Organization and Liberia’s Civil War. Book manuscript draft, May 2012. 

Michael Callen and James D. Long. Institutional Corruption and Election Fraud: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Afghanistan. Working paper, March 2012. 

Eli Berman, Jacob N. Shapiro, and Joseph H. Felter, Can Hearts and Minds Be Bought? The Economics of Counterinsurgency in Iraq,Journal of Political Economy Vol. 119, No. 4 (August 2011): 766-819. 

Eli Berman, Joseph H. Felter, Jacob N. Shapiro, and Michael Callen, Do Working Men Rebel? Insurgency and Unemployment in Afghanistan, Iraq, and the PhilippinesJournal of Conflict Resolution, August 2011.

See full list