Polarization and conflict: Theoretical and empirical issues

  • Esteban J
  • Schneider G
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Abstract

Recent formal and empirical research in political science and economics strongly indicates that various forms of political and social polarization increase the risk of violent conflict within and between nation states. The articles collected for this issue explore this crucial relationship and provide answers to a variety of topics: First, contributors address how institutions and other contingent factors mediate the conflict potential in polarized societies. Second, this special issue compares the explanatory power of income polarization with traditional and new measures of inequality. Third, the contributions examine how groups form and coalitions are built in polarized societies and how this affects political decision-making. Finally, the special issue analyses the interconnections between interstate war, internationalized conflict and polarization. This introduction synthesizes the literatures that have been developed on the issue of polarization and conflict in the various social scientific disciplin...

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Authors

  • Joan Esteban

  • Gerald Schneider

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