The Consequences of Contention: Understanding the Aftereffects of Political Conflict and Violence

Peer-reviewed Journal Article

Nygård, Håvard Mokleiv; Christian Davenport; Hanne Fjelde & Dave Armstrong (2019) The Consequences of Contention: Understanding the Aftereffects of Political Conflict and Violence, Annual Review of Political Science 22(1): 1–19.

​What are the political and economic consequences of contention (i.e., genocide, civil war, state repression/human rights violation, terrorism and protest)? Despite a significant amount of interest as well as quantitative research on the subject, the literature on this remains underdeveloped and imbalanced across topic areas. To date, investigations have been focused on particular forms of contention and specific consequences. While this has led to some important insights, substantial limitations -- as well as opportunities for future development -- remain.  In particular, there is a need for simultaneously investigating a wider range of consequences (beyond democracy and economic development), a wider range of contentious activity (beyond civil war, protest, and terrorism), a wider range of units of analysis (beyond the nation year) as well as a wider range of empirical approaches in order to handle particular difficulties confronting this type of inquiry (beyond OLS regression). Only then will we have a better and more comprehensive understanding of exactly what contention does and does not do politically and economically. This review takes stock of existing research and lays out an approach for looking at the problem using a more comprehensive perspective.