Conflict and Education Demand in the Basque Region

The relationship between conflict and education has been studied before. However, previous authors have always focused strongly on the supply-side effects, whereas this article examines the influence of conflict on the demand for education. It is theoretically shown that, under relatively general conditions, individuals living in a conflict area have an incentive to increase their level of education and that this effect depends on the individual’s skill level. This hypothesis is tested using the conflict in the Basque Region as a case study, which is an example of a conflict in which one would not expect strong supply-side effects. Using other Spanish regions, an artificial region is created in which the population has a similar educational distribution as in the Basque Region. When comparing the true and artificial regions, individuals with a medium education level clearly show an increase in education during the conflict, as predicted by the theoretical model.