Matthias Basedau

Managing Ethnic Conflict: The Menu of Institutional Engineering

GIGA Working Paper, No. 171, June 2011

Abstract
The debate on institutional engineering offers options to manage ethnic and other conflicts. This contribution systematically assesses the logic of these institutional designs and the empirical evidence on their functioning. Generally, institutions can work on ethnic conflict by either accommodating ("consociationalists") or denying ("integrationists") ethnicity in politics. Looking at individual and combined institutions (e.g. state structure, electoral system, forms of government), the literature review finds that most designs are theoretically ambivalent and that empirical evidence on their effectiveness is mostly inconclusive. The following questions remain open: a) Is politicized ethnicity really a conflict risk? b) What impact does the whole "menu" (not just single institutions) have? and c) How are effects conditioned by the exact nature of conflict risks?

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Prof. Dr. Matthias Basedau

Director of the GIGA Institute of African Affairs
Editor GIGA Focus Africa

Prof. Dr. Matthias Basedau is director of the GIGA Institute of African Affairs and professor of political science at the University of Hamburg. His research focuses on political institutions and armed conflicts, as well as how both are linked to ethnicity, religion, and natural resources. He is also the regional coordinator for Central and West Africa within the framework of the Bertelsmann Transformation Index.

Recent Publications by the Authors

Matthias Basedau

Party Systems in Africa

in: Nic Cheeseman (ed.), The Oxford Encyclopedia of African Politics, Oxford: Oxford University Press, forthcoming

Lisa Hoffmann / Matthias Basedau / Simone Gobien / Sebastian Prediger

Universal love or one true religion? Experimental evidence of the ambivalent effect of religious ideas on altruism and discrimination

American Journal of Political Science, online first, 2019

Håvard Hegre / Marie Allansson / Matthias Basedau / Michael Colaresi / Mihai Croicu / Hanne Fjelde / Frederick Hoyles / Lisa Hultman / Stina Högbladh / Remco Jansen / Naima Mouhleb / Sayyed Auwn Muhammad / Desirée Nilsson / Håvard Mokleiv Nygård / Gudlaug Olafsdottir / Kristina Petrova / David Randahl / Espen Geelmuyden Rød / Gerald Schneider / Nina von Uexkull / Jonas Vestby

ViEWS: A political violence early-warning system

Journal of Peace Research, 56, 2019, 2, 155-174

Matthias Basedau

Progress Overlooked: The Case for More "Afropositivism"

GIGA Focus Africa, 02/2019

Matthias Basedau / Johanna Schaefer-Kehnert

Religious discrimination and religious armed conflict in sub-Saharan Africa: an obvious relationship?

Religion, State and Society, 47, 2019, 1, 30-47