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Measuring Spatio-Temporal Civil War Dimensions Using Community-Based Dynamic Network Representation (CoDNet)
  • Didier Augusto Vega Oliveros ,
  • Ore Koren
Didier Augusto Vega Oliveros
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Ore Koren
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Abstract

Civil war exhibits complex geospatial trends over time, which may be missed by models that rely on count-based operationalizations. Here, the spatial and temporal correlation values of monthly civil war events are transformed into their influence degree symbol, which measures geospatial concentration, spread, and intensity of civil war. We then measure variation in these degrees over time to identify relevant Spatio-temporal civil war aspects. The network model is constructed using 0.5 degree grid locations as nodes, counting nearby and over-time connections. We then extract the temporal community structure behind the data. We use ground truth data to visualize how our measures correlate with observed patterns, thereby illustrating our method provides accurate depictions of geospatial civil war dynamics. We also evaluate the impact of several indicators highlighted by past research and our community-based spatio-temporal measures and comparing it to the preprocessed count indicator. Our findings indicate that the relationship between state capacity and climate stress show opposite correlations with civil war as those identified by studies that use count based indicators. Counterintuitively, our results show that conflict intensifies and spreads in locations where the state is stronger and where climate conditions are improved.