Data Dump Friday – Event Data on the Colombia Conflict, 1988 – 2005

Hello everybody.  Today initiates a new regular feature of the blog which I will call “Data Dump Friday”.

Each week I will post some conflict data on this page until I run out of stuff to post.  Unless I get a research assistant to streamline this operation this will go on for a long time.  (If you’re aware of some data set you think I have and you want to have please email me at or put a comment up on the blog.)

The back story is that I’ve been planning for a long time to create a massive data page and then make a grand announcement when it’s done.  But it has finally dawned on me that I will never reach a point when suddenly I have a big bloc of free time to complete this chore.  So I’ve decided to do this project in dribs and drabs until I’m done.

The first installment is now up.  It is event data on the Colombian Conflict, 1988 – 2005.


Mystics and Statistics Blogs on the Economics of Warfare

A while back I directed readers to the Mystics and Statistics blog which I continue to recommend.  Mystics and Statistics now returns the favour with interest.  Check out their series of posts on my Economics of Warfare lectures.

I’ve just been dumping these lectures onto my blog without comment.  So you should appreciate the way that Chris Lawrence highlights just a few key moments in each lecture. Chris is a real authority on the quantitative analysis of war (See this, this and this).  Moreover, he operates much more closely to the policy, as opposed to the academic, world than I do.  So his perspective complements mine nicely.

Have a look!

PS – I expect to do a lot more blogging now that I’ve stepped down as Head of Department (hurray!)


One Last Exchange of Letters in Significance with Nassim Nicholas Taleb

Significance Magazine is now hosting its final-exchange-of-letters on the future of war.  Once again, it is Steven Pinker and I dueling with Nassim Nicholas Taleb and Pasquale Cirillo.  You can judge for yourselves whether the four of us have hit a common groove.

If you feel sad because you have not followed all the twists and turns of this discussion then you should click through these links.


The History of Casualty Recording and the Launch of Every Casualty’s Standards for the Field

On Thursday night I was at the London launch (following an earlier one in Geneva) of new standards for the field of casualty recording.

Every Casualty (for which I’m a Board member) and its Casualty Recorders  Network spent years preparing for this moment and it was worth the wait.

Here are the slides from my presentation.

I will link to the podcast of the event when it becomes available.  I will also link to a video of the Geneva event when it appears.  I’m particularly keen to see the video since I wasn’t able to attend the Geneva event..