There might be many interesting observations and conjectures to be made based on the Kula Ring conjecture N. Szabo proposes. It might even be that such a conjecture is just one of many possibilities that could be covered and that truly different perspectives produce different truths or different causes can be seen to have different effects (or vice versa).
One possible example is thinking about land locked “states” situated in some form like islands where instead of water in the middle of a chain of islands you have one extra state. The state in the middle of a circle of states might be a political or strategic position, yet it might also simply be one of geographic significance (for example a large mountain or river with one crossing might produce an kula ring like situation).
Then there might be the same emerging build up of coincidence of wants if the center of such an economic problem gained certain incentives to participate in at least bargaining about trade.