Conflict and crime

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Conflict and crime

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Despite security concerns, Mauritians feel safe in their homes

While crime and insecurity remain a leading concern, most Mauritians feel safe in their neighbourhoods and homes, according to a new Afrobarometer survey.

Very few Mauritians report having been victims of theft or physical violence, and the proportion of survey respondents who identified crime and insecurity as the nation’s most important problem has declined, the 2014 survey findings show.

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BP96: Is crime dividing the Rainbow Nation? Fear of crime in South Africa

Do minority ethnic groups feel more victimized than the majority?  Is psychological fear of crime influenced by race, gender, social class, prior victimisation or some other factors?  Finally, what role, if any, does media exposure play in fear of crime?  Finally, does fear of crime affect confidence in the government or the future of South Africa?  An Afrobarometer public opinion survey conducted in late 2008 can provide answers to some of these questions.  The data also permits comparisons of public opinion on crime across a number of countries in Africa.  

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BP66: Popular views on crime in Tanzania

One of the foremost responsibilities of any government is to provide a secure environment in which the general public can survive and thrive.  But not all governments have met this obligation with the same degree of commitment or effectiveness.  The purpose of this bulletin is to explore popular perceptions of the crime situation in Tanzania, and the government’s effectiveness in handling this issue.  The findings presented here are based on three Afrobarometer surveys of public attitudes conducted in 2003, 2005 and 2008.

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BP2: Violent social conflict and conflict resolution in Nigeria

What do Africans think about violent social conflict, including its causes and preferred solutions?  How do conflicts affect popular support for democracy?

The Afrobarometer introduced questions on conflict in a survey in Nigeria in August 2001.  We chose to start with Africa’s most populated nation because it is a continental bellwether; as goes Nigeria, as a source of either chaos or stability, so goes the neighborhood. 

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WP149: Solidarity with a sharp edge: Communal conflict and local collective action in rural Nigeria

This paper provides new insights into the link between the experience of violent conflict and local collective action. I use temporal and geographical information from four rounds of survey data from Nigeria to relate measures of cooperation to past and future incidences of communal conflict. I show that local collective action, measured in terms of community meeting attendance and volunteering, is highest before the outbreak of violence – higher than both post-conflict levels and the generally lower levels of cooperation in regions not affected by violence.

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WP138: From vice to virtue? Civil war and social capital in Uganda

We show that armed conflict affects social capital as measured by trust and associational membership. Using the case of Uganda and two rounds of nationally representative individual-level data bracketing a large number of battle events, we find that self-reported generalized trust and associational membership decreased during the conflict in districts in which battle events took place. Exploiting the different timing of two distinct waves of violence, we provide suggestive evidence for a rapid recovery of social capital.

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WP111: Weak states and political violence in sub-Saharan Africa

Political violence has emerged as one of Africa 's most pressing security issues and recent events in Kenya , Cote d'Ivoire and Nigeria point to the salience of the phenomenon. Existing studies argue that the weak and incapacitated nature of African states is a significant factor contributing to high levels of political violence. Yet this insight does not help us to understand which aspect of a weak state affects political violence.

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WP102: Corruption and trust in political institutions in sub-Saharan Africa

This paper analyzes the impact of corruption on the extent of trust in political institutions using a rich collection of comparable data provided by the Afrobarometer surveys conducted in 18 sub-Saharan African countries. More specifically, we set out to test the "efficient grease" hypothesis that corruption can strengthen citizens' trust since bribe paying and clientelism open the door to otherwise scarce and inaccessible services and subsidies, and that this increases institutional trust. Our findings reject this theoretical argument.

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WP99: Vote buying and violence in Nigerian election campaigns

Vote buying and political intimidation are important, if epiphenomenal, dimensions of Nigerian election campaigns. According to survey-based estimates, fewer than one out of five Nigerians is personally exposed to vote buying and fewer than one in ten experiences threats of electoral violence. But when, as commonly happens, campaign irregularities are targeted at the rural poor, effects are concentrated. These effects are as follows: violence reduces turnout; and vote buying enhances partisan loyalty.

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WP64: Crime and support for democracy: Revisiting modernization theory

We revisit the literature on modernization theory and note that the theory posits that both increases in wealth and increases in crime rates accompany modernization. This fact is often ignored by much of the scholarship on democratization, which generally focuses on economic conditions. Using 2003 survey data from the Afrobarometer and the Latinbarometer, we examine how victimization and perceptions of crime influence citizens’ attitudes toward democracy.

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PP9: Mali’s public mood reflects newfound hope

In an Afrobarometer survey in December 2012, three quarters of adult Malians were worried that the country was moving in “the wrong direction.”  At that time, at the depths of a profound national crisis, most Malians thought the future looked bleak.  A year later, however, a follow-up survey reveals newfound hope in the future.  By December 2013, two thirds of all Malians now consider that that the country is headed in the “right direction.”

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