MDemografische Faktoren bei der Entstehung gewaltsamer Konflikte. Eine empirische Untersuchung für den Zeitraum von 1950 bis 2000

Zeitschrift für Soziologie 35.2006:120-143
Keywords: conflict and demography, demography and conflict, youth and conflict, mortality rate

##Demographic factors and the outbreak of violent conflicts. An empirical analysis from 1950 to 2000
In recent years several international scholars have argued that so-callcd youth bulges - a large percentage of young people in a population - are key factors in the outbreak of war and armed conflict. In the German speaking world, this demographic approach in the light of German history - has received very little attention. The current study, which focuses on the period from 1950 to 2000, explores, in worldwide scope, the relationship between the percentagc of young people, the infant mortality rate (as representative of development status), and the resulting probability of violent conflict. For the entire time period we find a conflict probability that rises proportionally with the percentage of young people; however, in the years from 1975 to 2000 an inverse U-shaped correlation developed. In other words, countries with extremely high proportions of young people showed a reduced conflict probability. We have identified AIDS-related mortality as one of the causes of this phenomenon. In addition to this, the study reviews the pertinence of this statistical relationship for the assessment of regional conflict risk. The essay pleads for a stronger consideration of demographic factors in conflict research.##