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Economic Aspects of Genocides, Other Mass Atrocities, and Their Preventions$
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Charles H. Anderton and Jurgen Brauer

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199378296

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199378296.001.0001

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Genocide and Mass Killing Risk and Prevention

Genocide and Mass Killing Risk and Prevention

Perspectives from Constrained Optimization Models

Chapter:
(p.143) 6 Genocide and Mass Killing Risk and Prevention
Source:
Economic Aspects of Genocides, Other Mass Atrocities, and Their Preventions
Author(s):

Charles H. Anderton

Jurgen Brauer

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199378296.003.0006

We apply constrained optimization models to the study of a regime’s decision to initiate genocide or mass killing (GMK) and to “optimal” techniques of mass atrocity (e.g., direct killing, enslavement) once a choice for GMK is made. The modeling exercises and applications (to Kosovo and DR Congo) give rise to a demand function for GMK, which can be used to understand GMK risks and prevention. The models are extended to reveal a “bleakness theorem,” in which policy efforts to prevent intentional attacks against civilians can be ineffective. We also explore the implications of reference dependence and loss aversion in understanding GMK, uncovering a “repression inertia theorem.”

Keywords:   genocide, mass atrocity, substitution possibilities, DR Congo, Bosnia, loss aversion

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