Recent studies emphasize the occurrence of conflict as a rational economic activity along with production and exchange. Agents are assumed to divide their efforts into fighting and productive activities, as commonly denoted by "guns" and "butter." This article tries to go beyond this "manichean" idea, assuming Boulding's concept of "integrative system." In particular, the article investigates whether a trade institution committed to free and fair trade could foster "peaceful" benefits for member countries. The analysis, produced in a very simplified world, counts as a founding pillar of the Contest Success Function. The results of the model suggest that in an institutionalized scenario, agents gain more both in terms of economic utility and in terms of peace than in "continuing conflict" and "obstructed trade" scenarios.
- contest success function; conflict; trade; institutions
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/raul_caruso/17/