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Proximity, Maps and Conflict: New Measures, New Maps and New Findings


  • Steve Pickering


This article introduces two new datasets. The first is a new interstate distance dataset. It is recognized that different theories regarding distance and conflict will call for different understandings of “distance†and accordingly, ten different types of distance measurement are presented. Moreover, it is argued that in order for a distance dataset to contain accurate distances, it is necessary for it to be based on maps reflecting state border changes over time. As such, a new map dataset is presented, including annualized maps for all states, stored in KML format. It will be shown that the frequent border changes experienced by states can have large impacts on distance calculations. The significance of the relationship between distance and conflict will be tested for the ten different types of distance measurement, not with the aim of finding a “best measure†but in order to demonstrate that distance remains an important variable and that each different form of distance measure can be significant.

Suggested Citation

  • Steve Pickering, 2012. "Proximity, Maps and Conflict: New Measures, New Maps and New Findings," Conflict Management and Peace Science, Peace Science Society (International), vol. 29(4), pages 425-443, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:compsc:v:29:y:2012:i:4:p:425-443

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    Cited by:

    1. Pickering Steve, 2014. "Divide and Conquer: The Impact of “Political” Maps on International Relations," Peace Economics, Peace Science, and Public Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 20(3), pages 1-18, August.

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    borders; conflict; distance; GIS; maps;


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