Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login

Bias in epidemiological studies of conflict mortality

Contents:

Author Info

  • Neil F. Johnson

    (University of Oxford)

  • Michael Spagat

    ()
    (Royal Holloway, University of London)

  • Sean Gourley

    (University of Oxford)

  • Jukka-Pekka Onnela

    (University of Oxford)

  • Gesine Reinert

    (University of Oxford)

Abstract

Cluster sampling has recently been used to estimate the mortality in various conflicts around the world. The Burnham et al. (2006) study on Iraq employs a new variant of this cluster sampling methodology. The stated methodology of Burnham et al. (2006) is to (1) select a random main street, (2) choose a random cross street to this main street, and (3) select a random household on the cross street to start the process. We show that this new variant of the cluster sampling methodology can introduce an unexpected, yet substantial, bias into the resulting estimates as such streets are a natural habitat for patrols, convoys, police stations, road-blocks, cafes and street-markets. This bias comes about because the residents of households on cross-streets to the main streets are more likely to be exposed to violence than those living further away. Here we develop a mathematical model to gauge the size of the bias and use the existing evidence to propose values for the parameters that underlie the model. Our research suggests that the Burnham et al. (2006) study of conflict mortality in Iraq may represent a substantial overestimate of mortality. We provide a sensitivity analysis to help readers to tune their own judgements on the extent of this bias by varying the parameter values. Future progress on this subject will benefit from the release of high-resolution data by the authors of Burnham et al. (2006).

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://www.hicn.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/rdn2.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Households in Conflict Network in its series HiCN Research Design Notes with number 2.

as in new window
Length: 25 pages
Date of creation: Dec 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hic:resdes:2

Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.hicn.org

Related research

Keywords:

References

No references listed on IDEAS
You can help add them by filling out this form.

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Michael Spagat, 2010. "Estimating the Human Costs of War: The Sample Survey Approach," HiCN Research Design Notes 14, Households in Conflict Network.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:hic:resdes:2. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Alia Aghajanian) or () The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask to update the entry or send us the correct address or () or ().

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.