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Correlations and forecast of death tolls in the Syrian conflict
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Sociology. Karolinska Institutet, Sweden.
Number of Authors: 32017 (English)In: Scientific Reports, ISSN 2045-2322, E-ISSN 2045-2322, Vol. 7, article id 15737Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The Syrian armed conflict has been ongoing since 2011 and has already caused thousands of deaths. The analysis of death tolls helps to understand the dynamics of the conflict and to better allocate resources and aid to the affected areas. In this article, we use information on the daily number of deaths to study temporal and spatial correlations in the data, and exploit this information to forecast events of deaths. We found that the number of violent deaths per day in Syria varies more widely than that in England in which non-violent deaths dominate. We have identified strong positive auto-correlations in Syrian cities and non-trivial cross-correlations across some of them. The results indicate synchronization in the number of deaths at different times and locations, suggesting respectively that local attacks are followed by more attacks at subsequent days and that coordinated attacks may also take place across different locations. Thus the analysis of high temporal resolution data across multiple cities makes it possible to infer attack strategies, warn potential occurrence of future events, and hopefully avoid further deaths.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 7, article id 15737
Keywords [en]
Applied mathematics, Nonlinear phenomena, Public health
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Other Natural Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-149801DOI: 10.1038/s41598-017-15945-xISI: 000415282900052PubMedID: 29146926OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-149801DiVA, id: diva2:1167692
Available from: 2017-12-19 Created: 2017-12-19 Last updated: 2017-12-19Bibliographically approved

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