The fate of disputed territories: An economic analysis

Yang Ming Chang, Joel Potter, Shane Sanders

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


This paper presents a simple model to characterize the outcome of a land dispute between two rival parties using a Stackelberg game. Unlike Gershenson and Grossman (2000), we assume that the opposing parties have access to different technologies for challenging and defending in conflict. We derive the conditions under which territorial conflict between the two parties is less likely to persist indefinitely. Allowing for an exogenous destruction term as in Garfinkel and Skaperdas (2000), we show that, when the nature of conflict becomes more destructive, the likelihood of a peaceful outcome, in which the territory's initial possessor deters the challenging party, increases if the initial possessor holds more intrinsic value for the disputed land. Following Siqueira (2003), our model has policy implications for peace through third-party intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)183-200
Number of pages18
JournalDefence and Peace Economics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Arming
  • Conflict
  • Deterrence
  • Disputed territories
  • Peace
  • War

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics


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