Analysis of Stability Indices and Their Representations in NOEM

Project: Research project

Project Details


The goal of this project is to define a set of meaningful stability measures for the NOEM user. It has the following three tasks. 1. Map the NOEM outputs to well-known national indicators During the summer at AFRL/RIEA, I have surveyed over 30 articles by different organizations around the world for assessing the stability of a nation-state and for predicting the occurrence of conflict inter- or intra-states. The next step is to synthesize the methodologies used by these indicators and link them to Proposal to Extension Grant the variables published by NOEM. For example, crime module produces murder rate prediction, which is an important measure for the Rule of Law (RoL) consideration. Murder rate, or more broadly, RoL measure, has been included in a number of stability indices proposed by various organizations, such as CIFP by Carleton University, MPICE by US Institute of Peace, SFI by USAID, ISW by Brookings Institute, WGI by World Bank. So, if we want to predict the stability using the World Banks WGI standard, the crime rate will be included in the index calculation. The work to be done in this project includes i) surveying NOEM output variables; ii) generating a list of stability indices that the NOEM will support. 2. Perform cluster analysis of stability indices Without a gold standard, it is difficult to compare one index to another. Instead, we can group them (clusters) based on their affinity measures on different countries, and by doing so, we can infer the underlying mechanism that separate these indices. A pilot experiment had been done on ten indices compiled by UN, World Bank, Fund for Peace, Freedom House, and so on, of twenty countries. From these measures, it is found that four indices are clustered as the first group and they are, in general, balanced and overall measures of national economy and social well-being. Five other indices that are related to political right and human right measures are clustered. Finally, there is one single index, HPI, which has considerable weights on environmental impacts, is far from other indices. In this project, I will i) extend this study by including more indicators, in particular those published by the NOEM; ii) trace the underlying mechanism of clusters and the dynamic of clusters over time; and iii) identify significant stability indices. 3. Investigate the ethnic polarization index In the seminal paper by Collier and Hoeffler (2002), the outbreak of civil war was explained from two perspectives: severe grievance and atypical opportunity for building rebel organization. The empirical study by Collier and Hoeffler indicates that the opportunity model seems to provide a better regression fit to the outbreak of civil war. However, most political scientists agree that grievance is the internal force that drives the ethnic tension to a potential conflict outbreak, although it may not be the sole cause. In this project, I will develop an ethnic polarization index for the NOEM that can capture the degree of grievance in a country. This index should not only represent the population distribution among different ethnic groups, as current indices do, but also summarize the imbalance of resources and other social aspects, such as religion, education, etc., among ethnic groups. This new index will be compared with other stability indices. I plan to complete the first task in the middle of September, the second and third tasks in November, and the final report will be submitted in December.
Effective start/end date8/10/0912/31/09


  • DOD-USAF: Air Force Research Labs (AFRL): $10,000.00

Fingerprint Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.