Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Investing in Arms to Secure Water

Janmaat, John A and Ruijs, Arjan (2006): Investing in Arms to Secure Water.

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Abstract

Where nations depend on resources originating outside their borders, such as river water, some believe that the resulting international tensions may lead to conflict. Homer-Dixon (1999) and Toset et al. (2000) argue such conflict is most likely between riparian neighbours, with a militarily superior downstream 'leader' nation. In a two stage stochastic game, solutions involving conflict are more common absent a leader, where a pure strategy equilibria may not exist. When upstream defensive expenditures substitute for water using investments, a downstream leader may induced an arms race to increase downstream water supplies. Water scarcity may not be a cause for war, but may cause a buildup in arms that can make any conflict between riparian neighbours more serious.

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