What Drives Individuals to Join Armed Organizations? The Role of Revenge, Moral Sentiments, and Social Networks

Leveraging an existing relationship with a large-scale armed organization, this study examines who joins armed organizations and why, as well as the effect of the participation motives on the performance and trajectories inside the group. The study aims to shed light on the traditionally unexplored role of moral sentiments of injustice and parochial revenge, and their impact on recruitment and violent labor management. We will interview new recruits as soon as they onboard, set up a fit bit tracking device, track their village of origin, interview their household and a random sample of households, and randomly select households among the households of new recruits to receive a cash transfer, in order to examine whether higher income creates incentives to quit the group.

RFP Cycle:
Second Round (Spring 2018)
Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Raul Sanchez de la Sierra
  • Full project