Can conflict lead to pro-social behavior and positive psychological growth?

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This study examines the effect of conflict on pro-social behavior (e.g., volunteering). To this end, I exploit a panel dataset to track individuals who were in danger of physical injury during a military operation in Israel in 2014 before and after this event, against a control group that was not in danger. My results reveal that following the conflict, individuals who were in physical danger are more likely to behave pro-socially than those who were not. Exploring possible mechanisms, I find increased psychological growth (e.g., closer relations with others and greater appreciation of life) after the operation. Placebo analysis using the pre-conflict period reinforces my conclusions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109684
JournalEconomics Letters
StatePublished - Jan 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier B.V.


  • Conflict
  • Pro-social behavior
  • Psychological growth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Finance
  • Economics and Econometrics


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