How Political Exclusion and Natural Resources Influence Conflict: A Case Study Analysis of South Sudan
There are several uncertainties about how natural resources and political exclusion influence conflict. This research will aim to study the relationship between natural resources and political exclusion from a decision-making process of an ethnic (minority) group and its influence on (violent) intrastate conflict to try and take away some uncertainties. Three theoretical narratives are studied to research this relationship, namely “the lootability of natural resources”, “the political economy approach”, and “the influence of rebel actors on conflict”. A case study of South Sudan is done through a qualitative content analysis. A codebook was developed to research the theoretical narratives. The results indicate that each narrative partially reveals that natural resources and political exclusion influence conflict by worsening it. However, other factors were found to play a role in each narrative, influencing conflict. In general, the conclusion is that natural resources and political exclusion from a decision-making process of an ethnic (minority) group influence (violent) intrastate conflict for the worse, and the relationship undermines political and economic institutions. However, other factors, such as ethnic polarization, the political regime, and conflict duration, influence this effect on conflict. A side note of this research is that personal bias might have influenced the analysis. Furthermore, only one case was studied, making it difficult to generalize the results. Future research must therefore focus on more than one case and use other research methods to verify the results. Furthermore, the effect of varied factors on conflict should be studied.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen