What's Population Got to Do with it?: The Onset of Civil War in Sub-Saharan Africa

Nobuko Mizoguchi, University of California, Berkeley

Sub-Saharan Africa has witnessed an upsurge of civil wars in the past two decades. While many theories exist about the different causes of civil war, population factors remain under-explored. The purpose of this paper is to examine the factors associated with the onset of civil war in Sub-Saharan Africa. Logistic regression was conducted using both bivariate and multivariate models and using pooled analysis and country-fixed effects. Results of the pooled analysis showed that total population and population density to increase the odds of the incidence of civil war while GDP growth lowered the odds when controlling for other economic, social and political factors. However, results from country fixed effects models showed that only GDP growth had a significant effect. With population size increasing in many Sub-Saharan countries, a closer examination of their demography may provide some clues to the political instability of the region.

  See paper

Presented in Poster Session 4