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On the Cost of Violence and the Benefits of Peace

  • Economics
  • Political Science


Wars can be immensely damaging to economies, and they can leave long-lasting scars on society. What are considered to be postwar or postviolence situations can see ongoing nonwar political, domestic, and criminal violence, with war economies not ending with the formal cessation of hostilities. Unarmed violence can have important effects and even forms of nonviolent conflict can carry substantial, measurable economic consequences. Surprisingly little substantive economics work on the subject is done particularly work that would deal with the possible paths countries can take from crises and there seems to exist an unfortunate lack of understanding among economists of the complexities of war and violence and its impact on economy and society, leaving a sometimes unrecognized legacy of violence and loss. This essay deals with some of the issues involved.

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