Matched Wake Analysis: Finding Causal Relationships in Spatiotemporal Event Data
Political Geography 41 (2014) 1-10
39 Pages Posted: 17 Apr 2014 Last revised: 11 Feb 2017
Date Written: April 14, 2014
This paper introduces a new method for finding causal relationships in spatiotemporal event data with potential applications in conflict research, criminology, and epidemiology. The method analyzes how different types of interventions affect subsequent levels of reactive events. Sliding spatiotemporal windows and statistical matching are used for robust and clean causal inference. Thereby, two well-described empirical problems in establishing causal relationships in event data analysis are resolved: the modifiable areal unit problem and selection bias. The paper presents the method formally and demonstrates its effectiveness in Monte Carlo simulations and an empirical example by showing how instances of civilian assistance to US forces changed in response to indiscriminate insurgent violence in Iraq.
Keywords: GIS, Civil War, Causal Inference, Indiscriminate Violence
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