Greater the economic backwardness, more the civil unrest

Washington D.C, Mar 21 (ANI): A new research has found that economically more backward countries are more likely to experience both violent and non-violent civil unrest.

The University of East Anglia (UEA) study looked at how economic backwardness has affected the likelihood of social tension and mass movements, from peaceful demonstrations to civil wars, since the end of the Second World War.

For the first time, the researchers found that the greater the development gap with the world economic leader, defined as the United States, the more likely a country has experienced non-violent and violent mass demonstrations for regime change and, to a lesser degree, armed civil conflict.

They show that under-development causes social unrest, not vice versa, and suggest that the impact of economic backwardness has been increasing in recent decades as globalisation has made it easier to make status comparisons with others.

The results also indicate that on average richer and more democratic countries tend to engage more in non-violent movements for political change than in violent ones.

Researcher Christa Brunnschweiler said that economic backwardness not only entails widespread poverty in a country, but can have serious consequences for its peace and stability, adding that the results may serve as a warning to governments that missed opportunities for economic development will come at the price of mounting social tension and unrest.

He noted, “Economic development is not only desirable for its own sake, but also because a widening gap between development leaders and laggards poses serious risks for internal stability in the countries left behind.”

The findings will be presented at the Royal Economic Society’s annual conference in Brighton. (ANI)

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