The Resource Curse: Conflict, Governance, and Exclusion
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Level: Undergraduate, Graduate
Division: The New School for Public Engagement
School: Milano School of International Affairs, Management, and Urban Policy
Department: Milano General Curriculum
Course Number: NINT 5411
Course Format: Lecture
Location: NYC campus
Permission Required: No
  • International Affairs
This course examines the negative outcomes often associated with natural resource wealth. In some countries resource abundance is linked to armed conflict, authoritarian governance, social and environmental damages on local communities, and the undermining of inclusive and sustainable development. Yet the resource curse is not inevitable, as some countries and communities have managed to avoid conflict and instead benefit from natural resource wealth. Through both cross-country analysis and a series of case studies drawn from the Middle East and North Africa, Asia, Latin America, and Sub-Saharan Africa, we analyze possible policies to address the resource curse, including: transparency initiatives, domestic and international laws, bank lending safeguards, voluntary business mechanisms, collective property rights institutions, and the role of national governments, civil society, and the international community. The course will deepen students’ understanding of the complex effects of natural resource wealth and critically analyze proposed policy solutions to these entrenched challenges.
Course Open to: Degree Students with Restrictions


Not open to Freshman students.

Not open to Sophomore students.