Polarization and Conflict

Led by Scott Gates
Jan 2004 – Dec 2007
PRIO/CSCW is one of 8 partners in this 4-year 'Specific Targeted Research Project' funded by the EU.

The consortium is coordinated by Joan Esteban at Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC), Barcelona. The leader of the research team in Oslo is Scott Gates. Nils Petter Gleditsch is on the consortium's Scientific Advisory Board. 

The purpose of this Europe-wide collaboration is to promote and coordinate research on the conceptualization, modelling and measurement of polarization and conflict and the links between the two. We aim at contributing to identify the main forces leading to conflict, provide tools and indicators for early warning, understand the role of alternative forms of third party intervention such as mediation or arbitration in the reaching of an agreement, and design post-conflict, viable agreements, including the system of political representation. To achieve this, we will integrate the different approaches that have independently developed in the different social sciences and will combine models with factual evidence. We expect the outcome be a multidisciplinary understanding of conflict in which the analytical models will be tested against facts.

The project has its own webpage, set up by CSIC.

The main focus of the researchers in the CSCW node is datasets. An overview of the datasets of relevalce to the project can be seen here.

In addition to CSCW and CSIS, other institutional partners in the PAC consortium are:

  • Tel-Aviv University
  • Utrecht University
  • Institut d'Économie Industrielle
  • Université de Toulouse I
  • University of Konstanz
  • Università Luigi Bocconi-Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research
  • London School of Economics and Political Science.

Workshop in Nicosia 26–29 April 2006

A workshop on polarization and conflict was held in Nicosia, Cyprus 26–29 April 2006, co-sponsored by the Centre for the Study of Civil War at PRIO and the Polarization and Conflict Network (PAC).


Peer-reviewed Journal Article

Gradín, Carlos; Debraj Ray & Joan Esteban (2007) An Extension of a Measure of Polarization, with an Application to the Income Distribution of Five OECD Countries, Journal of Economic Inequality 5(1): 1–19.

Book Chapter

Aydin, Aysegul & Scott Gates (2008) Rulers as Mass Murderers: Political Institutions and Human Insecurity, in Marie-Joëlle Zahar, ed., Intra-State Conflict, Governments and Security: Dilemmas of Deterrence and Assurance. London: Routledge (72–95).

Conference Paper

Nordås, Ragnhild; Jan Ketil Rød & Gudrun Østby (2006) Regional Inequalities and Civil Conflict in 21 Sub-Saharan Countries, 1986-2004, presented at the 47th Annual Convention of the International Studies Association (ISA), San Diego, 22–25 March.
Nordås, Ragnhild; Jan Ketil Rød & Gudrun Østby (2006) Regional Inequalities and Civil Conflict in 21 Sub-Saharan Countries, 1986-2004, presented at the workshop on Polarization and Conflict (PAC), Nicosia, Cyprus, 26–29 April.
Rød, Jan Ketil & Lars-Erik Cederman (2006) Modeling Ethinc Conflict in Center-Periphery Dyads, presented at Polarization and Conflict conference, Nicosia, Cyprus, 26–29 April.
Binningsbø, Helga Malmin; Scott Gates & Tove Grete Lie (2006) Post-Conflict Justice and Sustainable Peace, presented at Polarization and Conflict Workshop, Nicosia, Cyprus, 26–29 April.
Ormhaug, Christin Marsh (2006) Democracy, Human Rights, and Demand for Small Arms in Latin America, presented at Polarization And Conflict conference, Nicosia, Cyprus, 26 April.
Hegre, Håvard (2005) Polarization and Interstate Conflict, presented at Polarization and Conflict (PAC) Winter meeting, Milan, 16­–17 December.
Østby, Gudrun (2004) Do Horizontal Inequalities Matter for Civil Conflict?, presented at Polarization and Conflict (PAC) Winter Meeting, Barcelona, 10–11 December.


Past Events