Technical Report Conflict, Institutions, and Economic Behavior : Legacies of the Cambodian Genocide

KOGURE, Katsuo  ,  TAKASAKI, Yoshito

2016-12 , Hitotsubashi Institute for Advanced Study, Hitotsubashi University
This paper examines how the Cambodian genocide under the Pol Pot regime (1975-1979) altered people’s post-conflict behaviors through institutional changes. Combining spatial genocide data and the 1998 Census microdata, we compare the impacts of the genocide on subsequent investments in children’s education between couples who had their first child during and after the Pol Pot era. Because under the Pol Pot regime private ownership was completely denied and spouses and children were owned by the state as collective property, these couples had quite distinct institutional experiences: The former were controlled as family organizations and the latter were not. We find that the genocide adversely influenced children’s education among the former couples, but not the latter ones. We discuss plausible mechanisms underlying these patterns, shedding new light on why institutions which emerged during the conflict persistently shaped people’s post-conflict behaviors.

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