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A new geography of civil war: a machine learning approach to measuring the zones of armed conflicts

Kyosuke Kikuta

Political Science Research and Methods, 2022, vol. 10, issue 1, 97-115

Abstract: Where do armed conflicts occur? In applied studies, we may take ad hoc approaches to answer this question. In some regression studies, for instance, a single conflict event can cause an entire province to be classified as a conflict zone. In this paper, I fill this void of knowledge by developing a machine learning method that is less dependent on the areal-unit assumptions and can flexibly estimate conflict zones. I apply the method to a conflict event dataset and create a new dataset of conflict zones. A replication of Daskin and Pringle (2018, Nature 553, 328–332) with the new dataset indicates that the effect of civil war on mammal populations is much smaller than the original estimate.

Date: 2022
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Handle: RePEc:cup:pscirm:v:10:y:2022:i:1:p:97-115_7