The Long-Term Demographic Consequences of War and Genocide in Bosnia and Rwanda

Sarah E. Staveteig, University of California, Berkeley

How did war and genocide affect demographic trends in Bosnia and Rwanda? Initially, of course, war caused an enormous number of casualties: it is estimated that around 2% of the population in Bosnia and 8% of the population in Rwanda died during the war. A large share of the population was also displaced in both countries during and after the war. This paper examines how fertility and marriage patterns changed in both countries over the course of the post-war period. Drawing from a multi-method, multi-site study involving data analysis from nationally-representative household surveys and 117 qualitative interviews with women in both countries, I argue that post-war fertility trends were influenced by the age and sex composition of victims, the degree of economic collapse, and by the relative success of political and ethnic reconciliation.

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Presented in Session 148: Demographic Determinants and Consequences of War, Conflict, and Terrorism