Genetic Diversity and the Origins of Cultural Fragmentation
Despite the importance attributed to the effects of diversity on the stability and prosperity of nations, the origins of the uneven distribution of ethnic and cultural fragmentation across countries have been underexplored. Building on the role of deeply-rooted biogeographical forces in comparative development, this research empirically demonstrates that genetic diversity, predominantly determined during the prehistoric "out of Africa" migration of humans, is an underlying cause of various existing manifestations of ethnolinguistic heterogeneity. Further exploration of this uncharted territory may revolutionize the understanding of the effects of deeply-rooted factors on economic development and the composition of human capital across the globe.
The authors are grateful to Stelios Michalopoulos for helpful comments. Daniel Prinz provided able research assistance. Ashraf's research is supported by a Hellman Fellowship from Williams College. Galor's research is supported by the National Science Foundation (SES-0921573) and the Population Studies and Training Center (PSTC) at Brown University. The PSTC receives core support from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (5R24HD041020). The views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Quamrul Ashraf & Oded Galor, 2013. "Genetic Diversity and the Origins of Cultural Fragmentation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(3), pages 528-33, May. citation courtesy of