Advances in data on conflict and dissent

Computational conflict research

Published On 2020

In this chapter, I review the role of data in driving innovation in research on conflict. I argue that progress in conflict research has been strongly related to the growth of systematic empirical data. I draw on a series of examples to show how data have served as a source of theoretical innovation. I discuss early models of conflict distributions and their enduring relevance in current discussion of conflict trends and the evidence for a decline in violence. I consider the interaction between theoretical models of conflict and empirical analysis of interstate conflict, as well as the rapid growth in disaggregated studies of civil war and developments in data innovation, which in turn help generate new research agendas. I conclude with some thoughts on key unresolved problems in current conflict research, namely the lack of attention to incompatibilities as the defining characteristics of conflict and accounting for scale and differences in event size.

Journal

Computational conflict research

Published On

2020

Page

23-41

Authors

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

Position

Professor Department of Government & Peace Research Institute Oslo

H-Index(all)

60

H-Index(since 2020)

48

I-10 Index(all)

0

I-10 Index(since 2020)

0

Citation(all)

0

Citation(since 2020)

0

Cited By

0

Research Interests

Conflict

international relations

democratization

statistical methods

political science

University Profile Page

Other Articles from authors

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

Governance

Judiciary institutions and violent crime in American Indian nations

In many American Indian nations the security situation is dire. While scholars have studied how institutions shape economic development in American Indian and Alaska Native (AIAN) nations, the role of AIAN institutions for security and violent crime has received much less attention—despite the extensive literature highlighting the important role of effective and legitimate institutions in the long‐term decline of violence. We analyze how varying types of American Indian polities and judiciary institutions fare in tackling violent crime using data across 146 American Indian polities. Our findings indicate that more autonomous American Indian criminal justice institutions with specialized court systems are associated with lower violent crime. However, customary justice institutions do not appear to be effective in reducing violent crime, highlighting the problem of cultural mismatch between traditional and formal justice …

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

European Journal of International Relations

Clouds with silver linings: how mobilization shapes the impact of coups on democratization

There is a long-standing debate over the impact of coups on democratization. Some argue that coups can help promote transitions to democratic rule. Yet, others contend that coups often spur increased repression and autocratization, undermining hopes of democratic reform. We argue that both democratic and autocratic changes are more likely after a coup and that popular mobilization plays a crucial role in shaping the post-coup trajectory. Democratization is more likely when coups occur in the presence of significant popular mobilization. A coup reveals cracks within a regime, and the combination of pressure from within and threat from below during popular mobilizations fosters greater incentives to promise democratic reform. In the absence of popular mobilization, autocratic rule is more likely, especially when a coup is successful. We test our argument on the combined effect of popular mobilization and coups …

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

PLoS one

Local deprivation predicts right-wing hate crime in England

We argue that community deprivation can increase the risk of right-wing radicalization and violent attacks and that measures of local deprivation can help improve forecasting local hate crime rates. A large body of research stresses how experiences of deprivation can erode the perceived legitimacy of political leaders and institutions, increase alienation, and encourage right-wing radicalization and hate crime. Existing analyses have found limited support for a close relationship between deprivation and radicalization among individuals. We provide an alternative approach using highly disaggregated data for England and show that information on local deprivation can improve predictions of the location of right-wing hate crime attacks. Beyond the ability to predict where right-wing hate crime is likely, our results suggest that efforts to decrease deprivation can have important consequences for political violence, and that targeting structural facilitators to prevent far-right violence ex ante can be an alternative or complement to ex post measures.

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

Journal of Peace Research

Going, going, gone? Varieties of dissent and leader exit

We examine how popular dissent affects the likelihood that political leaders lose power, distinguishing between types of dissent in terms of nonviolent/violent primary tactics as well as the level of individual participation. We posit that protests threaten leaders both directly through the governance costs of citizen non-compliance, and indirectly through the increased risk of elite defections in the ruling coalition. In a series of propositions we detail how the type of dissent and the magnitude of participation influence the odds of leaders surviving in office. We argue that mass nonviolent challenges tend to be more threatening to a leader’s rule than violent dissent, given the characteristics of movements likely to choose nonviolent tactics. Moreover, the effectiveness of the challenge increases in the scale and size of the dissident campaign, and movements that can mobilize larger numbers have a comparative advantage in …

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

International Studies Review

Challenges to Scholarship and Policy During Crises

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a dramatic influence on mortality and public health and generated much speculation on potential impacts on international politics. Fast-moving crises such as the COVID pandemic and 2008 financial crises entail many challenges for scholarship; events evolve rapidly, our prior knowledge base is limited, it is unclear whether existing theories or analogies apply, and new research findings emerge quickly but also erratically. Researchers face demands to engage with policy and general audiences when normal standards of scholarship may be difficult to apply. Crises can also have a dramatic impact on how we conduct research and interact with other scholars. The forum introduction outlines how crises pose challenges for scholarship and policy and the value of approaching crises such as COVID-19 in comparative perspective. Milner highlights the important differences …

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

Peace Economics, Peace Science and Public Policy

This Research has Important Policy Implications…

The COVID 19 pandemic has generated much interest in the relationship between research and policy. It has drawn new attention to the limitations of a linear model, where policy is based on first observing prior scientific research and then designed in response to this. Conflict researchers often motivate the importance of their work by claiming that their “research has important policy implications”, but the proposals offered are often at best incomplete. I identify a number of common limitations in claims about policy implications, including a lack of discussion of objectives and priorities, stating objectives themselves as if they were policies, claims about targeting factors without discussing the effectiveness of possible interventions, and a failure to consider uncertainty and potential tensions with other objectives or unintended effects. Research can potentially inform policy discussions and improve decisions, but the …

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

Political Geography

Michael D. Ward (1948–2021) and the road to space, networks and geography

We were very sad to learn of the passing of our mentor, friend, and collaborator Michael D. Ward on 9 July 2021. Mike made important contributions to political geography, and he served on the editorial board of Political Geography from 2002 to 2013 as well as the advisory board for the Center for Spatially Integrated Social Sciences at the University of California Santa Barbara. Above all, he played a key role in disseminating insights on the role of geography and spatial concepts and methods to his home discipline, political science.In this intervention, we have gathered scholars who worked with Mike at different times in his career to reflect on themes in his research and the enduring relevance of his contributions. Our introduction gives a brief account of how Mike’s interest in geography and space evolved.

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

International Studies Quarterly

One without the other? Prediction and policy in international studies

Like many others, I have spent much time since March 2020 reviewing and reflecting on research on COVID-19 and the policy responses to the pandemic. This has in turn inspired me to reflect on research and policy in my own field. The crisis over Russian demands on Ukraine in early 2022 and the subsequent Russian invasion of Ukraine is at the time ofCentre for Advanced Studies, Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters in Oslo, on May 11–12. I would like to dedicate this article to my late supervisor, close collaborator, and personal friend Michael D. Ward. We had many useful discussions on forecasting, and his work on conflict prediction has had a major influence on the field. I hope he would have enjoyed this presidential address.

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

International Studies Quarterly

Ties that bias in international conflict: A spatial approach to dyadic dependence from alliance ties and inbetweenness

Much of international behavior is linked spatially and temporally. Yet, analyses of interstate interactions generally either assume independence among units or resort to technical solutions to dependence that “throw away” relevant information. We detail a more informative and satisfying approach to modeling spatial dependence from extra-dyadic linkages in alliance ties and geographical proximity as specific pathways of conflict contagion. Beyond deterrence, the purpose of alliances is to draw other parties into dyadic contests, but most existing research on conflict onset generally only considers alliance ties within an individual dyad or external intervention in the same dispute. We develop new measures on third- and fourth-party alliance ties, demonstrating direct and indirect spatial effects of alliances on conflict onset. Similarly, ongoing contests can spread geographically, but dyads in some locations are …

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

The Journal of Development Studies

Can education reduce violent crime? Evidence from Mexico before and after the drug war onset

Existing theories relate higher education to lower crime rates, yet we have limited evidence on the crime-reducing effect of education in developing countries. We contribute to this literature by examining the effect of education on homicide in Mexico, where homicide rates decreased by nearly 55 percent from 1992 to 2007, before the surge of drug-related violence. We argue that a large amount of this reduction followed a compulsory schooling law at the secondary level in 1993, when the government undertook key education reforms to promote development and economic integration. We employ different empirical strategies that combine regression analysis, placebo tests, and an instrumental variable approach, and find that attendance in secondary and tertiary schools has a negative effect on homicide rates before the onset of the Drug War, although the evidence for secondary enrolment is more robust. This effect …

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

Journal of Conflict Resolution

Mapping the International

This article introduces CShapes 2.0, a GIS dataset that maps the borders of states and dependent territories from 1886 through 2019. Our dataset builds on the previous CShapes dataset and improves it in two ways. First, it extends temporal coverage from 1946 back to the year 1886, which followed the Berlin Conference on the partition of Africa. Second, the new dataset is no longer limited to independent states, but also maps the borders of colonies and other dependencies, thereby providing near complete global coverage of political units throughout recent history. This article explains the coding procedure, provides a preview of the dataset and presents three illustrative applications.

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

Journal of Conflict Resolution

Mapping the international system, 1886-2019: the CShapes 2.0 dataset

This article introduces CShapes 2.0, a GIS dataset that maps the borders of states and dependent territories from 1886 through 2019. Our dataset builds on the previous CShapes dataset and improves it in two ways. First, it extends temporal coverage from 1946 back to the year 1886, which followed the Berlin Conference on the partition of Africa. Second, the new dataset is no longer limited to independent states, but also maps the borders of colonies and other dependencies, thereby providing near complete global coverage of political units throughout recent history. This article explains the coding procedure, provides a preview of the dataset and presents three illustrative applications.

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

In Memoriam: Michael D. Ward (1948–2021)

We were deeply saddened by the passing of our mentor, friend, and colleague Michael D. Ward on 9 July 2021. Mike served on the editorial board of Defence and Peace Economics from the start of 1990 until 2015, and made important contributions to the study of military expenditures, the economics of peace and militarized conflict, as well as modeling and statistical methods in the social sciences. We extend our deep sympathies to Mike’s family Sandra and Chris. Born in Japan to a military family, Mike had a long academic career, at many institutions and multiple countries. He received a PhD in Political Science from Northwestern University in 1977, with a doctoral dissertation on the political economy of inequality, which was later published as The

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

Journal of Conflict Resolution

From claims to violence: Signaling, outbidding, and escalation in ethnic conflict

Do radical political demands increase the risk of ethnic civil conflict? And why do ethnic movements make radical demands in the first place? We contend that when movements are fragmented, individual organizations use far-reaching claims relative to the status quo to attract attention from the government, boost intra-organizational discipline, and outbid rivals. Yet, such radical claims also increase the risk of conflict escalation. We test our arguments at both the ethnic group and organizational levels, using a new dataset on ethno-political organizations and their political demands. Our results show that the scope of demands increases the more organizations exist within an ethnic movement and that radical demands increase the risk of civil conflict onset. This effect is specific to the dyadic government-movement interaction, irrespective of other ethnic groups in the country. Moreover, at the organizational level …

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

Political Studies Review

Houston, we have a problem: enhancing academic freedom and transparency in publishing through post-publication debate

Debates over controversial articles often highlight important issues regarding academic freedom, transparency, and how to handle disagreements in publishing. I argue that a response outlining criticism is generally a more productive course of action than calling for retraction. However, there are a number of constraints that impede meaningful debates, and a problematic divergence between our common ideals of open research and free debate and the actual practices that we see in academic publishing, where our current practices often undermine transparency, replication, and scientific debate. I argue that research can benefit from more explicit recognition of politics and preferences in how we evaluate research as well greater opportunities for post-publication debate. The successful initiatives to promote data replicability over the past decade provide useful lessons for what improved post-publication …

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

The Economics of Peace and Security Journal

Accounting for numbers: Group characteristics and the choice of violent and nonviolent tactics

Scholars have shown that nonviolent movements tend to be more successful than violent movements. A key explanation is that nonviolent movements have a mobilization advantage over violent campaigns. As nonviolent movements have lower barriers to active participation, they can expand quickly by mobilizing much larger numbers than violent movements. We argue that such a mobilization advantage is not universal, and that different movements are likely to have a comparative advantage in one tactic over another. We develop a simple model emphasizing how the ex ante potential for mobilization and prospects for success steer the choice of dissident tactics. Nonviolent tactics can be relatively more effective when a movement can mobilize more active participants than with violence, but movements with limited mobilization potential can have feasible prospects for violent dissent and a nonviolent mobilization disadvantage. We examine the implications of the model against empirical data for different types of dissident tactics and on resort to nonviolent and nonviolent dissent. We demonstrate very different actor profiles in nonviolent dissent and violent conflict, and show how each of the two types of dissent are more likely under very different settings. To compare success by types of dissent we must account for how differences in potential numbers or mobilization shape tactical choices.

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

Terrorism and Political Violence

Better the devil you know? How fringe terrorism can induce an advantage for moderate nonviolent campaigns

Fringe terrorism is common during nonviolent campaigns. We examine how this can modify the strategic environment between dissident groups and the state in ways that present both challenges and opportunities to moderate factions. Terrorism is intended to promote violent escalation in a conflict, but we argue that fringe terrorist activities in a nonviolent campaign under certain conditions can induce an advantage for well-organized moderate factions. The risk of escalation following terrorism can give the government more incentives to offer concessions to moderate campaign leaders if the movement can credibly prevent armed escalation. The ability to control and prevent violence is more likely when nonviolent movements have a hierarchical structure and a centralized leadership, as such campaigns are better able to prevent shifts by supporters towards violent fringes. Using new data on terrorist attacks by …

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

Mobilization

Ticked off, but scared off? Riots and the fate of nonviolent campaigns

Research on the relationship between nonviolent and violent dissent has focused on explicit shifts in organized strategies, disregarding less-organized forms of violence such as riots. Even though disorganized violence is common, we know little about how it influences the onset and fate of antigovernment nonviolent campaigns. Activists frequently argue that nonviolent discipline is essential and disorganized violence is counterproductive for effective large-scale mobilization. However, others emphasize how disorganized violence could have a mobilizing effect on large-scale protest and revitalize a nonviolent campaign. We detail these competing perspectives on how riots can influence the onset and outcomes of nonviolent campaigns. We then evaluate these contending claims empirically by examining how riots affect the initial emergence of nonviolent campaigns and the likelihood that campaigns will terminate …

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

International Journal of Qualitative Methods

Preregistering qualitative research: A Delphi study

Preregistrations—records made a priori about study designs and analysis plans and placed in open repositories—are thought to strengthen the credibility and transparency of research. Different authors have put forth arguments in favor of introducing this practice in qualitative research and made suggestions for what to include in a qualitative preregistration form. The goal of this study was to gauge and understand what parts of preregistration templates qualitative researchers would find helpful and informative. We used an online Delphi study design consisting of two rounds with feedback reports in between. In total, 48 researchers participated (response rate: 16%). In round 1, panelists considered 14 proposed items relevant to include in the preregistration form, but two items had relevance scores just below our predefined criterion (68%) with mixed argument and were put forth again. We combined items where …

Other articles from Computational conflict research journal

Mark S. Williamson

Mark S. Williamson

University of Exeter

Computational Conflict Research

On the beaten path: Violence against civilians and simulated conflict along road networks

Why do some conflict zones exhibit more violence against civilians than others? In answering this question, the literature has emphasized ethnic fractionalization, territorial control and strategic incentives, while overlooking the consequences of armed conflict itself. This oversight is partly due to the methodological hurdles of finding an appropriate counterfactual for observed battle events. In this chapter, we aim to test empirically the effect of instances of armed clashes between rebels and the government in civil wars on violence against civilians. Battles between belligerents may create conditions that lead to surges in civilian killings as combatants seek to consolidate civilian control or inflict punishment against populations residing near areas of contestation. Since there is no relevant counterfactual for these battles, we utilize road networks to help build a synthetic risk-set of plausible locations for conflict. Road networks are crucial for the logistical operations of a civil war and are thus the main conduit for conflict diffusion. As such, the majority of battles should take place in the proximity of road networks; by simulating events in the same geographic area, we are able to better approximate locations where battles hypothetically could have occurred but did not. We test this simulation approach using a case study of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (1998–2000) and model the causal effect of battles using a spatially disaggregated framework. This work contributes both substantively and methodologically to the literature on micro-foundations of civil war and reactive violence in two main ways:(1) It offers a tentative framework for crafting synthetic …

Sanja Hajdinjak

Sanja Hajdinjak

Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München

Computational conflict research

Migration policy framing in political discourse: evidence from Canada and the USA

How do parties discuss migration policy in legislative speeches? Legislative bodies are an arena for verbal conflicts where the parties vie for their ideological interests but also sharpen new rhetorical figures. Political parties develop policy stances strategically different from those of competing parties and elucidate those stances through legislative debates and public statements. A large body of literature argues that some issues, like migration, fall in a gap between established societal cleavages over which parties do not have robust, issue-specific ownership. More recent research suggests migration may be a part of a new transnational cleavage that pits cosmopolitan sensibilities against nationalist sentiments in a conflict over issue ownership and policy framing. Building off this debate, we hypothesize that parties discuss migration topics by diverting attention to subcomponents of migration policy over which they have established issue ownership. Using machine learning techniques, we test this assertion by measuring the differences in salience and framing of migration-related topics over time in the debates of the lower houses of Canada and the United States—the Canadian House of Commons and the United States’ House of Representatives from 1994 to 2016. We find that there are substantive differences in the emphasis on and framing of the migration policy between the two ideological blocks. Democrats in the USA and liberals in Canada emphasize subcomponents of the migration debate which they traditionally own, such as welfare and humanitarian aspects. Both conservative blocks do the same by framing their discussion of …

Luis Gustavo Nardin

Luis Gustavo Nardin

National College of Ireland

Computational Conflict Research

Advancing Conflict Research Through Computational Approaches

Conflict, from small-scale verbal disputes to large-scale violent war between nations, is one of the most fundamental elements of social life and a central topic in social science research. The main argument of this book is that computational approaches have enormous potential to advance conflict research, eg, by making use of the ever-growing computer processing power to model complex conflict dynamics, by drawing on innovative methods from simulation to machine learning, and by building on vast quantities of conflict-related data that emerge at unprecedented scale in the digital age. Our goal is (a) to demonstrate how such computational approaches can be used to improve our understanding of conflict at any scale and (b) to call for the consolidation of computational conflict research as a unified field of research that collectively aims to gather such insights. We first give an overview of how various computational approaches have already impacted on conflict research and then guide through the different chapters that form part of this book. Finally, we propose to map the field of computational conflict research by positioning studies in a two-dimensional space depending on the intensity of the analyzed conflict and the chosen computational approach.

Masoud FattahZadeh

Masoud FattahZadeh

Ferdowsi University of Mashhad

Computational conflict research

On the fate of protests: Dynamics of social activation and topic selection online and in the streets

This chapter studies individual and network conditions for the emergence of large social protests in an agent-based model. We use two recent examples from Iran and Germany to inform the modeling process. In our agent-based model, people, who are interconnected in networks, interact and exchange their concerns on a finite number of topics. They may start to protest either because of their concern or because the fraction of protesters in their social contacts exceeds their protest threshold. In contrast to many other models of social protest, we also study the coevolution of topics of concern in the not (yet) protesting public. Given that often a small number of citizens starts a protest, its fate depends not only on the dynamics of social activation but also on the buildup of concern with respect to competing topics. Nowadays, this buildup happens decentralized through social media. The model reproduces characteristic patterns of the evolution of the two empirical cases of social protests in Iran and Germany. In particular, our results show that positions of agents with certain concern levels on certain topics within the networks are important for the fate of protests.

Baris Kirdemir

Baris Kirdemir

University of Arkansas at Little Rock

Computational Conflict Research

Do Non-State Armed Groups Influence Each Other in Attack Timing and Frequency? Generating, Analyzing, and Comparing Empirical Data and Simulation

Abstract Non-State Armed Groups (NSAGs) operate in complex environments, commonly existing as one of the many organizations engaged in one-sided violent attacks against the state and/or the civilian population. When trying to explain the execution and timing of these attacks, most theories look at NSAGs’ internal organizational features or how these groups interact with the state or civilian population. In this study, we take a different approach: we use a self-exciting temporal model to ask if the behavior of one NSAG affects the behavior of other groups operating in the same country and if the actions of groups with actual ties (ie, groups with some recognized relationship) have a larger effect than those with environmental ties (ie, groups simply operating in the same country). We focus on

Jan Lorenz

Jan Lorenz

Jacobs University Bremen

Computational conflict research

On the fate of protests: Dynamics of social activation and topic selection online and in the streets

This chapter studies individual and network conditions for the emergence of large social protests in an agent-based model. We use two recent examples from Iran and Germany to inform the modeling process. In our agent-based model, people, who are interconnected in networks, interact and exchange their concerns on a finite number of topics. They may start to protest either because of their concern or because the fraction of protesters in their social contacts exceeds their protest threshold. In contrast to many other models of social protest, we also study the coevolution of topics of concern in the not (yet) protesting public. Given that often a small number of citizens starts a protest, its fate depends not only on the dynamics of social activation but also on the buildup of concern with respect to competing topics. Nowadays, this buildup happens decentralized through social media. The model reproduces characteristic patterns of the evolution of the two empirical cases of social protests in Iran and Germany. In particular, our results show that positions of agents with certain concern levels on certain topics within the networks are important for the fate of protests.

Masoud FattahZadeh

Masoud FattahZadeh

Ferdowsi University of Mashhad

Computational Conflict Research

Advancing Conflict Research Through Computational Approaches

Conflict, from small-scale verbal disputes to large-scale violent war between nations, is one of the most fundamental elements of social life and a central topic in social science research. The main argument of this book is that computational approaches have enormous potential to advance conflict research, eg, by making use of the ever-growing computer processing power to model complex conflict dynamics, by drawing on innovative methods from simulation to machine learning, and by building on vast quantities of conflict-related data that emerge at unprecedented scale in the digital age. Our goal is (a) to demonstrate how such computational approaches can be used to improve our understanding of conflict at any scale and (b) to call for the consolidation of computational conflict research as a unified field of research that collectively aims to gather such insights. We first give an overview of how various computational approaches have already impacted on conflict research and then guide through the different chapters that form part of this book. Finally, we propose to map the field of computational conflict research by positioning studies in a two-dimensional space depending on the intensity of the analyzed conflict and the chosen computational approach.

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

Kristian Skrede Gleditsch

University of Essex

Computational conflict research

Advances in data on conflict and dissent

In this chapter, I review the role of data in driving innovation in research on conflict. I argue that progress in conflict research has been strongly related to the growth of systematic empirical data. I draw on a series of examples to show how data have served as a source of theoretical innovation. I discuss early models of conflict distributions and their enduring relevance in current discussion of conflict trends and the evidence for a decline in violence. I consider the interaction between theoretical models of conflict and empirical analysis of interstate conflict, as well as the rapid growth in disaggregated studies of civil war and developments in data innovation, which in turn help generate new research agendas. I conclude with some thoughts on key unresolved problems in current conflict research, namely the lack of attention to incompatibilities as the defining characteristics of conflict and accounting for scale and differences in event size.

Adam Pah

Adam Pah

Northwestern University

Computational Conflict Research

Do Non-State Armed Groups Influence Each Other in Attack Timing and Frequency? Generating, Analyzing, and Comparing Empirical Data and Simulation

Abstract Non-State Armed Groups (NSAGs) operate in complex environments, commonly existing as one of the many organizations engaged in one-sided violent attacks against the state and/or the civilian population. When trying to explain the execution and timing of these attacks, most theories look at NSAGs’ internal organizational features or how these groups interact with the state or civilian population. In this study, we take a different approach: we use a self-exciting temporal model to ask if the behavior of one NSAG affects the behavior of other groups operating in the same country and if the actions of groups with actual ties (ie, groups with some recognized relationship) have a larger effect than those with environmental ties (ie, groups simply operating in the same country). We focus on

Simone Cremaschi

Simone Cremaschi

Università Commerciale Luigi Bocconi

Computational Conflict Research

Do Non-State Armed Groups Influence Each Other in Attack Timing and Frequency? Generating, Analyzing, and Comparing Empirical Data and Simulation

Abstract Non-State Armed Groups (NSAGs) operate in complex environments, commonly existing as one of the many organizations engaged in one-sided violent attacks against the state and/or the civilian population. When trying to explain the execution and timing of these attacks, most theories look at NSAGs’ internal organizational features or how these groups interact with the state or civilian population. In this study, we take a different approach: we use a self-exciting temporal model to ask if the behavior of one NSAG affects the behavior of other groups operating in the same country and if the actions of groups with actual ties (ie, groups with some recognized relationship) have a larger effect than those with environmental ties (ie, groups simply operating in the same country). We focus on

Jan Lorenz

Jan Lorenz

Jacobs University Bremen

Computational Conflict Research

Advancing Conflict Research Through Computational Approaches

Conflict, from small-scale verbal disputes to large-scale violent war between nations, is one of the most fundamental elements of social life and a central topic in social science research. The main argument of this book is that computational approaches have enormous potential to advance conflict research, eg, by making use of the ever-growing computer processing power to model complex conflict dynamics, by drawing on innovative methods from simulation to machine learning, and by building on vast quantities of conflict-related data that emerge at unprecedented scale in the digital age. Our goal is (a) to demonstrate how such computational approaches can be used to improve our understanding of conflict at any scale and (b) to call for the consolidation of computational conflict research as a unified field of research that collectively aims to gather such insights. We first give an overview of how various computational approaches have already impacted on conflict research and then guide through the different chapters that form part of this book. Finally, we propose to map the field of computational conflict research by positioning studies in a two-dimensional space depending on the intensity of the analyzed conflict and the chosen computational approach.

Nicolas Payette

Nicolas Payette

University of Oxford

Computational Conflict Research

Do Non-State Armed Groups Influence Each Other in Attack Timing and Frequency? Generating, Analyzing, and Comparing Empirical Data and Simulation

Abstract Non-State Armed Groups (NSAGs) operate in complex environments, commonly existing as one of the many organizations engaged in one-sided violent attacks against the state and/or the civilian population. When trying to explain the execution and timing of these attacks, most theories look at NSAGs’ internal organizational features or how these groups interact with the state or civilian population. In this study, we take a different approach: we use a self-exciting temporal model to ask if the behavior of one NSAG affects the behavior of other groups operating in the same country and if the actions of groups with actual ties (ie, groups with some recognized relationship) have a larger effect than those with environmental ties (ie, groups simply operating in the same country). We focus on

Juan Masullo

Juan Masullo

Universiteit Leiden

Computational Conflict Research

Do Non-State Armed Groups Influence Each Other in Attack Timing and Frequency? Generating, Analyzing, and Comparing Empirical Data and Simulation

Abstract Non-State Armed Groups (NSAGs) operate in complex environments, commonly existing as one of the many organizations engaged in one-sided violent attacks against the state and/or the civilian population. When trying to explain the execution and timing of these attacks, most theories look at NSAGs’ internal organizational features or how these groups interact with the state or civilian population. In this study, we take a different approach: we use a self-exciting temporal model to ask if the behavior of one NSAG affects the behavior of other groups operating in the same country and if the actions of groups with actual ties (ie, groups with some recognized relationship) have a larger effect than those with environmental ties (ie, groups simply operating in the same country). We focus on