NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Choosing Between Peace and War

Herschel I. Grossman

NBER Working Paper No. 10180
Issued in December 2003
NBER Program(s):   EFG

Although most disputes between groups of people are settled peacefully, sometimes disputes result in war. This lecture uses historical examples to illustrate how the ability to negotiate a credible peaceful settlement of a dispute between sovereign states, typically a dispute over the control of territory or natural resources, depends on the divisibility of the outcome of the dispute, on the effectiveness of the fortifications and counterattacks with which an attacker would expect to have to contend, and on the permanence of the outcome of a potential war. The lecture also contrasts the possibilities for avoiding wars between sovereign states with the possibilities for avoiding civil wars.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w10180

Published: Herschel I. Grossman, 2013. "Choosing Between Peace and War," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 14(3), pages 1085-1113, December. citation courtesy of

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