The significance of ideology in conflict modelling for political risk assessment in international business

Lee, Andrew (2006) The significance of ideology in conflict modelling for political risk assessment in international business. MBA dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    Multi-national businesses considering direct investment in a foreign country need to assess the potential risks to the profitability of their investments, based on the economic, social and political stability of a country. One significant country risk is the possibility of violent political conflict, where the outbreak of violence between an opposition group and a government can affect the business climate. The effects of violence can result in the loss of physical assets, displacement of staff and markets, disruptions to supply chains, loss of autonomy due to political upheavals, and an uncertain business environment long after the conflict has terminated. Within political risk assessment, the field of conflict modelling investigates models of political violence. These models combine economic, social and political factors into formal models to explain, predict and mitigate this area of political risk. The concept of ideology, representing the beliefs and values of governments and opposition groups in a conflict, has been neglected in these models. However, ideology may be a significant factor in the resolution of conflict - if political disputes begin as disagreements between the ideological beliefs and values of opposition groups against a government and these disputes escalate into violent conflict, then resolving the conflict at the ideological level may mitigate the risk of physical violence and avoid the subsequent disruption to economic, social and political systems. To determine whether this would be possible requires a demonstration of whether ideology is a significant influence on violent political conflict. In addition, an analysis of whether the concept of ideology is compatible with conflict modelling is required to demonstrate that viable conflict models involving ideology can be developed. This dissertation investigates these issues, starting by identifying a suitable definition of ideology for representing violent political conflict; determining whether ideology can be considered as a factor in conflict models and for which types of models it would be suitable for; and demonstrating whether ideology is a significant influence on the occurrence and outcome of violent political conflict. It is hoped that the results of this research will guide developers and users of conflict models in determining whether ideology can be useful for their understanding of violent political conflict.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Portsmouth Business School > Operations and Systems Management
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 20 Jan 2011 12:47
    Last Modified: 28 Jan 2015 11:13

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