Syllabus for War and Development

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  • 7.5 credits
  • Course code: 2FK049
  • Education cycle: Second cycle
  • Main field(s) of study and in-depth level: Peace and Conflict Studies A1N
  • Grading system: Fail (U), Pass (G), Pass with distinction (VG)
  • Established: 2015-05-25
  • Established by: The Department Board
  • Revised: 2017-08-10
  • Revised by: The Department Board
  • Applies from: week 01, 2018
  • Entry requirements: Fulfilment of the requirements for a Bachelor's degree with a social science subject as the main field of study.
  • Responsible department: Department of Peace and Conflict Research

Learning outcomes

After completion, the student is expected to be able to:

  • Critically evaluate core arguments for why and how socio-economic development leads to less armed conflict
  • Account for arguments for the effects of conflict on development
  • Evaluate arguments for how peace and prosperity may have joint explanations
  • Critically evaluate empirical evidence in support of or in opposition to the various arguments covered in the course
  • Independently identify research problems and relevant practical-policy issues in the subject area.
  • Critically and correctly, in English, present state-of-the-art reviews and overviews of recent research findings in the subject area.
  • With good scientific insight and the required methodological skills collect, organise, analyse and draw appropriate, independent conclusions of relevance for the theory and practice in the subject area.
  • Independently delimit, design and write a report within the specified time limit.
  • Be able to judge/asses the works and efforts/performances of others from a wide theoretical and practical perspective.
  • See connections, interactions, influences and interdependence between the dynamics of organised violence and those of broader socio-economic development.


The course will give an introduction to the literature on the relationship between armed conflict – domestic and interstate -- and socio-economic development, widely defined as a mixture of economic productivity, state capacity, and citizens’ welfare. It will discuss theoretical arguments where the relationship between war and development is mediated by state capacity, asset specificity or appropriability, economic networks, education, demography, or through democratisation. The course will have a strong focus on empirical documentation but also look at the theoretical arguments explaining the empirical patterns. The course will consider the effect of development on conflict as well as the effect of conflict on development in terms of economic growth, public health, refugee flows, and gender differences in health outcomes. It will also look at arguments that link both conflict and development to deeper causal processes.


The course will be given in the form of lectures and seminars.


Assessment and final grading is based on

  1. A course paper
  2. Active participation in lectures and seminars
Grades: Pass with distinction (VG), Pass (G), Fail (U).
Two dates to resubmit the final course paper are offered every year the course is given.

Syllabus Revisions

Reading list

The reading list is missing. For further information, please contact the responsible department.