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Working Paper 197 - Estimating the Economic Cost of Fragility in Africa


State fragility and breakdown, along with violent conflict, pose significant risks to global and regional security. Most contemporary armed conflicts take place within states, and the majority of their victims are civilians. Conflict and fragility impede efforts to reduce poverty and the prevention of conflict through development is cheaper than dealing with the aftermath of conflict. When violent conflict breaks out, development is derailed and conflict is development in reverse. Conflicts not only cause a contraction of output, they also destroy infrastructure. Financial and human capital tends to leave countries, but to quantify the phenomenon is hard without a counterfactual.

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