UCDP GED 2.0 now launched!

UCDP Georeferenced Event Dataset (UCDP GED) version 2.0 now released!

Today, 21st October, the Uppsala Conflict Data Program officially releases its latest major dataset update: the UCDP GED version 2.0.

The UCDP GED is an event-based and georeferenced dataset on organized violence, with the latest update making data available for the African and Asian continents, from 1989-2014.

This release contains a major update to our African data, expanding the time series from 2010 to 2014.The biggest innovation is, however, the inclusion in the dataset of the entirety of Asia (the previous release contained only East Asia) from 1989-2014. This release includes organized violence in countries such as Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, and Sri Lanka.

The dataset now totals approximately 90 000 events of organized violence.

Some changes have also been made to the codebook, to allow for a better and easier user experience. As always, the data are available in several different formats: CSV, KML, Excel, R, SQL, and as shapefiles.

You can see a visualization of the data HERE, and download the data and the codebook HERE. To read the dataset presentation article, please click HERE.

Our next release, coming soon, covers the Middle East from 1989 to 2014.

The UCDP GED contains data on all types of organized violence, disaggregated spatially and temporally down to the level of the individual incidents of fatal violence. Each event comes complete with date of the event, place of the event (with coordinates), actors participating in the event, estimates of fatalities, as well as variables that denote the certainty with which these data are known. The dataset allows for the analysis of the causes, dynamics and resolution of organized violence at a level of analysis below the state system. The data can be conjoined with other sub-state data, such as disaggregated information on population, economy and the environment to allow for types of analyses and answer questions that country-level cannot address.




2013 Armed Conflict Update: Two out of five war fatalities occurred in Syria

The UCDP’s update of armed conflicts for 2013 is about to be released, as always in the Journal of Peace Research. A press release detailing some of the findings has, however, been released.


The introduction reads:


“Conflicts in the world last year increased by one compared to 2012, up to 33. This is reported by peace researchers at Uppsala University’s Conflict Data Program. The number has remained stable over the past decade. 2012 saw an increase in the number of battle-related deaths with the number of casualties in Syria completely overshadowing any other ongoing conflict. In 2012, two out of five people dying in battles, died in Syria.”


Read the entire press release here!



New Update Alert is out

The UCDP Update Alert No.15 was released today!

This update contains info on a new data release; the UCDP Managing Intrastate Conflict Africa Dataset v.2.1-2013. This dataset covers third party interventions in African conflicts between 1993 and 2007 and expands on the earlier MILC dataset.

The UCDP Conflict Encyclopedia has also been updated.

More news is available in the Update itself: http://www.ucdp.uu.se/gpdatabase/ucdp_update_alert/UCDP_updatealert15.html



New charts and graphs

We’ve finished updating the graphs for most of our data on violence, so these now go up until 2012. You can have a peak here: http://www.pcr.uu.se/research/ucdp/charts_and_graphs/ if you want to find different formats.

If you just want to glance, check out the gallery below:



Map of the world’s conflicts in 2012

Sometimes you are forgetful. This applies to a blog as well. I should have posted this as soon as it was done, but nobody is perfect.

Please find a map detailing the world’s armed conflict in 2012 below! (click to enlarge)



New Release: All new graphs for 2011

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Since a whole heap of updated datasets have now been released the Charts and Graphs section of the UCDP:s website is now being updated.

Below you will find a selection of the latests graphs, now updated to include 2011 and all revisions of earlier years:

More graphs are availabe at: http://www.pcr.uu.se/research/ucdp/charts_and_graphs/

New Release: UCDP’s annual report on armed conflicts in 2011


On Friday 13th the UCDP released its annual report on armed conflicts; this release detailing the events of 2011. The release – announced in press releases in Swedish and English – is accompanied by a full update to the armed conflict category of the UCDP Conflict Encyclopedia as well as a data presentation article in the Journal of Peace Research.

As may have been expected by many following the events of the Arab Spring the report paints a relatively bleak picture, with the initial paragraph noting that 37 armed conflicts were active (i.e. stood between a government and a rebel group or between a government and a government, involved a stated political incompatibility, and caused more than 25 battle-related deaths) in 2011, which is an increase from the 31 recorded in 2010. This is an increase of almost 20%.

Although a substantial increase (in fact the largest increase between years since 1990) this number is still nowhere near the 50+ conflicts recorded in the early 1990s. In fact, looking back a couple of years gives a much stronger impression of relatively stable numbers around the 30-35 mark that fluctuate relatively mildly. As is stated in the JPR piece it is thus much too early to conclude that the trend of declining violence in the world noted by the widely publicized books by Joshua Goldstein and Steven Pinker is coming to an end.

More statistics of interest is the increase in wars (more than 1000 battle-deaths) from 2010 to 2011; increasing from four in 2010 to six in 2011. These conflicts were the ones in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen and Libya.

Yet another piece of bad news was noted by Professor Peter Wallensteen, the UCDP:s director. Namely that only one peace agreement was signed during the whole year of 2011. This is the lowest recorded number since 1987. Even though the number of peace agreements has been falling during the late 2000s and early 2010s this could mark the end of an era of international attempts at peaceful conflict resolution (this post’s speculation, and not Professor Wallensteen’s).

Some notes on these numbers

While many may automatically associate this increase in the number of armed conflicts with the Arab Spring this event’s imprint on the data is actually relatively small. Only Syria and Libya were classified as armed conflicts. Most of the other countries that were affected by this political event either experienced relatively little violence, or were struck by violence against civilians by government forces, or by more disorganized clashes between police and protesters.

The largest contributing factor to this increase is in fact the lack of stability in Africa, with conflicts reigniting in the Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Senegal, and new conflicts starting in Southern Sudan and Sudan.

Except for Yemen and Libya the countries embroiled in war are the same as over the past few years. Libya’s war in 2011 was short but intense, whilst Yemen’s conflict with Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula had been simmering for years before exploding in 2011. The intensity of fighting continues to increase in Afghanistan, with estimates reaching as high as 7000-8000 killed in battles. Intensity in Pakistan and in Somalia have, however, dropped somewhat.

More to come

This was only a short resume of all of the data now available concerning the year 2011. Other information available is:

–          The press release for the launch of the annual update, in English and in Swedish

–          The data presentation article itself, at the Journal of Peace Research

–          A full update of the UCDP Conflict Encyclopedia for the state-based category of violence

–          Updates up to 2011 (and revisions for earlier years) of several other datasets for analysis

–          Updates to charts and graphs within the week

//Ralph Sundberg, Ph.D. candidate and project manager (UCDP GED)