Peace and Democracy: Three Levels of Analysis Author(s): Nils Petter Gleditsch and Havard Hegre Reviewed work

(s): Source: The Journal of Conflict Resolution, Vol. 41, No. 2 (Apr., 1997), pp. 283-310 Published by: Sage Publications, Inc. Stable URL: . Accessed: 09/12/2011 11:19
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Peace and Democracy

InternationalPeace ResearchInstitute,Oslo (PRIO) Departmentof Sociology and Political Science, Norwegian Universityof Science and Technology

Peace and regime type can be examinedat the dyadic, nation,and system levels. At the dyadic level, it is well establishedthatdemocraciesrarelyif ever fight each other.At the nationallevel, the broadconsensus is that there is no significantrelationshipbetween democracyand war participation, this conclusion but At remainscontroversial. the systemlevel, therehasbeenlittleresearch; most scholarshave takenforgranted thatthe answer can be inferredfrom the findingsat the dyadic or nationallevels. The authorsshow that,if the conventionalwisdom holds at the dyadicandnationallevels, the probability warin a politicallymixed of of and between dyad mustbe higherthanthe probability warbetweentwo nondemocracies, the relationship Thusincreasingdemocratization democracyandwaratthe systemlevel mustbe parabolic. initiallyproduces more war, and the reductionof war startsonly at a higherlevel of democratization.


In this articlewe investigatethe relationship betweendemocracyandpeace at three levels of analysis:
Dyadic: Do democraciesusually keep the peace among themselves? Nation: Do democraciesmore frequentlymaintainpeace overall? of System:Is aninternational systemwith a high proportion democraticstatesmorepeaceful?
AUTHORS' NOTE: Some of the Correlatesof Wardata and the Polity data used in this articlewere of madeavailablefromthe Interuniversity Consortium PoliticalandSocial Research(ICPSR),eitherdirectly or throughthe Norwegian Social Science Data Archives (NSD). Neitherthese institutionsnor those who originallygeneratedthe dataare responsiblefor our use of them. For commentson earlierversions of the article, we are gratefulto ClarkAbt, StuartBremer,Scott Gates, WarwickMcKibbin,Sara McLaughlin, Arvid Raknerud, RudolphRummel,Bruce Russett,Roslyn Simowitz, and ErichWeede, as well as to Dan Smith and other colleagues at PRIO. John Wilken Aschehoug provided technical assistance with the to Finally,we would like to express our gratitude the FridtjofNansen Foundationfor Science manuscript. and the Humanities,the NorwegianMinistryof Defense, and the NorwegianResearchCouncil (NFR) for financialsupport.
Vol. 41 No. 2, April 1997 283-310 JOURNALOF CONFLICT RESOLUTION, ? 1997 Sage Publications,Inc. 283

given the conventionalwisdom-that democracieshardly ever fight each other but overall participatein war as much as other countries-it follows logically that the probabilityof war in a politically mixed dyad must be higher than the probabilityof war between two nondemocracies. Otherstudies have found a bell-shapedrelationship domestic conflict (Mullerand Weede 1990. Dictatorshipsalso have less violence because they repress any opposition before it can organize. and dataon political system characteristics III data a system memberin 1993. we do not examinethose effects here. with conflicting results and with the prevailingopinionleaning in the directionof a no. To the COW data on interstatewars we have addeddata for 1993 Polity and 1994 from the Uppsala data to cover the entire Polity time span2from 1816 to 1994 in the study of interstatewars. The second question has also been analyzed a great deal. presumably because they permit the expression of opposition in peaceful ways.but it is commonlyassumedthatit can be answeredby a simple deductionfrom one of the two otherlevels. we have addedthe new UN member. Althoughdemocracyis conflict. Therewere no new international .000 annualbattle between the degree of democracyand violent 1.Finally. Next we show that. so there must be somethingwrong eitherwith the deductionsor with the empiricalregularities.1 clearly relevantfor subnational RESEARCH DESIGN SPATIALAND TEMPORALDOMAIN wars Ourempiricalstudyis basedon the dataon militarizeddisputesand interstate in the Correlatesof War(COW)dataset. Ellingsenand Gleditsch. and yes.with clear results. dataon post-ColdWararmedconflicts from from the the UppsalaUniversitydata set. The first question has been extensively researched. parabolic).butthe Armenian-Azerbaijan continued. 304-5). 2.Democracieshave less domestic interstatewar is defined as a violent conflict between two or more membersof the international system involving morethan 1. we look briefly at the empiricalevidence at the system level.e. summarized Gleditsch 1995a.The thirdquestionhas rarelybeen subjectedto empiricalinvestigation. Following the COW criteriafor membershipin in the interstatesystem (Small and Singer 1982. no.Andorra. 39-43.forthcoming).284 RESOLUTION JOURNALOF CONFLICT The prevailingopinion appearsto answerthese three questions yes.and the relationshipbetween peace anddemocracyat the system level mustbe bell-shaped(i. war warsin these 2 years.Both of these system-level statementscannot be true at the same increasingnumberof democraciesin the systemwill producea morepeaceful system. but now shiftingin the directionof a perhaps. THE DEPENDENT VARIABLE In the COW project. The "in-between" countriesare the most violence prone. Othershave arguedthatif democraciesare as war prone as nondemocracies. using several measuresof conflict. In this articlewe firstconfirmthe democraticpeace at the dyadic level andthe lack of a clear relationshipat the nationallevel. it makesno differenceat the systemlevel if the numberof democraciesincreases. The most commonconclusionis thatif democraciesdo not fight each other.

Ourtwo otherdatasets have interstate a lower thresholdon violence. Thus some country years and dyad years included here have no Polity data at all. The militarized disputesdatafor 1816 to 1892 conflicts with the use or threatof force. from 1877 to 1939. competitivenessof executive recruitment (-2 to 2).the overlapbetweenthe Polity andCOWdatais very high (Gleditsch 1995a. the new version has corrected a small summationerrorin the scores for democracyand the autocracyscores and a few other errorsthat barely affect the statisticalresults. Relative to the version publicized in Jaggers and Gurr (1995).The Uppsaladatarequirethat at least one governmentto be among the is contendingparties.4 only data set includes 172 currentand historical countries.and Moore 1989. combining assessmentsof the competitivenessof political participation to (-2 (-2 3).Gleditsch.we first compute for each country year the difference between the Polity III indices of institutionalized democracyand institutionalized autocracy.Whereveranothergovernment listed on the opposingside. The cutoff at 3 is fairly arbitrary is set to give roughly the same proportionof democraciesas in previous studies with a cutoff of 6 on the democracyscale alone. In terms of units of Polity analysis. 3. openness of executive recruitment to 1). AUTOC= 4) andGermany from 1908 to 1917 (DEMOC= 5. transition. The correctedversion of the data set is availableby anonymousftp from <isere.3 DEMOCRACY We use the most recentlycorrectedversion of the Polity III data set generatedby Ted Gurrandassociates(Gurr. but we can go only as far as the Polity data have been updated(i. we define the country as democratic.and missing data(Gurr.If DEMOC-AUTOCis 3 or higher. regulationof politicalparticipation to 0). Russia is coded with a 4 in 1917 but did not reach this level again until 1991. we have coded the conflict as international.e. the The such dataset to cover the full spatialandtemporaldomainof the COWdata.Primeexamplesof countrieswith a high score on the two indices areJapanfrom 1868 to 1944 (DEMOC= 5. we have merged this category with the Polity codes of interruption. 306). to 1994).colorado. Jaggers. However. Ourdemocracyindex may be validatedintuitivelyby considering values for a few selected countries:The United States exceeds 3 for the entire time span.>.We have coded all countriesat opposite sides in a war as being opponents.Hegre /PEACE AND DEMOCRACY 285 deaths(Small and Singer 1982. Jaggersand Gurr1995). AUTOC= 3). The dataarepublishedby conflict. andFranceis classified as a democracyfrom 1848 to 1950. The DEMOC and AUTOC indexes in Polity are additiveindexes rangingfrom 0 to 10. and from 1946 onward. 6-8). For the measurementof democracy. the Polity set of countriesis somewhat smaller than COW's. Germanyachieves it duringthe WeimarRepublic (1919-1932) and again from 1949.By using the differencebetween the two scales. and constraintson the (-1 but chief executive (-3 to 4). . (Singer and Small 1994) includeall interstate and The Uppsaladata(Wallensteen Sollenberg1996) includeall armedconflicts with more than 25 dead in a given year. Combiningthem(DEMOC-AUTOC) yields an additiveindex rangingfrom-10 to 10.andMoore 1990. For simplicity.. interregnum. we avoid categorizing ambiguousregimes as democracies. The Uppsala conflicts have been updateduntil Singerand Small 1994). Jaggers. 4.

it is by no means perfect. even where therewas a formaldeclaration war.The anomalouscases of warbetweendemocracies comprise30 the United States-Finland as dyads are particularly inappropriate war dyads." resulting to three-waycontest. Weede 1992.5 of Two anomalousdyadyears occurbecausethe time variablein the Polity dataset is too coarse.. which divided the island and. ironically.. also Weart1994). 271).For 1919 they also list War. 382) or virtuallywithout exception (Rummel 1983. (p.Table2 lists the exceptions.No less than24 of these aremadeup by Finlandversusvarious Westerndemocraciesin WorldWarII.g. Although this is a strong and highly significant relationship. It is includedin the newest versionof the COWdataset butas a marginalwar (1. The 1971 BangladeshWarbetweenIndiaandPakistanwas precededby a stateof emergencyin Pakistan.He chargesFinlandwith having"pursued alliancewith fascists and .it seems moreappropriate dismissthese shiftsas a weakness to in our measurementof dyadic war data because there was no war action at all.excluded for the same reason.000 battle deaths) between two brand-newdemocracies. 313). Thus these dyadyears should be classified as wars between a democracyand a nondemocracy.. as has Ray (1993. Table 1 summarizesthe evidence for the entire 179-yearperiod. one might question the Polity coding of Lithuaniaas a democracyfrom 1918 (cf. The senior authorhas dealt more extensively with the case of Finlandelsewhere (Gleditsch 1993). Turkey responded by an invasion.Similarly.Some disagreementremainsas to whetherthe relationshipis merely very strong (e. of course.g. 180). instigatedby a militaryregimein Greece..286 JOURNALOF CONFLICT RESOLUTION DO DEMOCRACIES USUALLY MAINTAIN PEACE WITH EACH OTHER? The evidence from previous studies is straightforward: there are few if any wars between democracies. These anomalies occur because regime changes in Polity are coded by year ratherthanby date. broughtdown the Greekcolonels' regime. 61-2) is somewhatmisleading. declared an war on democracies"(it was. Coding Spain 5. Gleditsch 1993. the Lithuanian-Polish was consideredtoo smallto be includedin earlierversionsof the COWset of interstate wars6and thereforehas not turnedup in earlierlists (e. In Small and Singer(1982. The dataindicate thatthe relativefrequencyof war between two democraciesis abouttwo fifths of the relative frequency of war between two nondemocracies. 337) a Polish-Ukrainian . 1995. The United States resisted Soviet pressureto declarewar on Finland.Englandthatdeclaredwaron Finland). Turko-Cypriot in 1974 was preceded the War by a GreekCypriotmilitarycoup. These cases could be interpreted "derived as from the change of sides of a major actor (the Soviet Union) in a war. Polish Waris listed as a warbut with differentdates 6.However. Ray 1993).Because Lithuania'sconstitutionwas not adopteduntil 1922 (The Baltic States 1991.Five days later.It would notbe unreasonable modify the theoryof the democratic to incorporate such majorshifts in a multipolar as one of the circumstances war peace underwhich small democraciesmight unwittinglyfind themselves at war with other democracies. Warof 1919 Of the remainingfour anomalousdyad years.Politically mixed dyads have an even higher relative frequency of war than (democracy/nondemocracy) nondemocratic dyads.Spiroalso countsEngland's attackon Germanshippingin a Finnishharboras an attackon Finlandmore than4 monthsbefore England declaredwar on Finland. The discussion in Spiro (1994. 338) the Lithuanian (1920-1927) and is excluded because it did not meet the battlecasualtiesthreshold.

12 .537 62. a.00 100.TABLE 1 DemocracyandDyadic Relationshipsin War.1816-1994 (perc Two Democracies One Democracy No Democracies Typeof Relationship MissingRegime Data or RegimeTransitio . b.020 in 1994. Meansthatthe two countriesin the dyadare at war and on the same side of the war. The X2tests at the end of the first two rows refer to the two 2 x 3 tables that em transition columneliminated.17 At war with each other .693 of wars from the Correlates Warproject. admitthe validityof this figureswherethis dependencyhas been reducedandeven eliminated.Twopossibleobjectionsto ouruse of chi-squaretests arethe following:( We wars continuingover several years are countedas severalobservations.The n autocracy to 17.Each dyadis countedseparatelyfor each year.581 39.however.(2) The numberof observation and thus securingsignificantresults.65 99.05 .18 Allied in wara 99. Democracy defined as NOTE:Interstate indices in the correctedPolity IIIdata. Includesall dyadswhere neithercountryis at war or whereonly one countryis at war (with some 0oo *sj .This objection.61 .00 100.00 100.00 Total Numberof dyadyears 219.51 .is not valid as long as thereis no dep onsets of dyadicconflictor war(see Table4) wouldnot changeif we hadchosen the dyadmonthas th and countiy) the expectedcountsfor nonwarare much highertha countij expectedcountij]/expected the statistic.74 .76 98.12 .563 227.44 Otherb 100.65 99.updatedto 1994.

7 7. and "almost all were symbolic and short-termuses of armed force" with little loss of life (Kegley and Hermann1996. and it is questionablewhether such conflicts have any place in a data set on interstatedisputes.. andgiven confirmsthe very strongdyadicrelationship our caveats aboutthe data.288 JOURNALOF CONFLICT RESOLUTION TABLE2 AnomalousCases: WarbetweenDemocracies. the threator use of force is usually acted out betweenthe government on one side and a privatefishing vessel on the other.An averagepairof democraciesis allied in war more thanfour times as frequentlyas the averagepair of nondemocracies.. New Zealand.Table 1 betweendemocracyandpeace. Likewise. 319). claiming more than 100 lives) betweendemocraciesarementionedin the dataset generated Tillema(1991). But there are few such interventionsbetween democracies. fight each other. . Coding Syriain 1948 and Pakistanin 1965 as democraciesis also debatable.None of these four deviant cases concernsstable or establisheddemocracies. 1816-1994 Country1 Spain Lithuania Finland Country2 United States Poland Australia. mismatchmay conceivablyyield new warsbetween Moreover.they are more frequently allied in war.if ever. 254) but not for the highestcategoryof MIDs ("wardisputes")andfewer than for othercombinationsof regime types. But even in the absence of such systematic reconsideration. SouthAfrica. Studiesusing militarizedinterstate disputes(MIDs) (Gochman and Maoz 1984) find some conflict between democracies(Maoz and Russett 1992.The intergovernmental interaction generallylimited is to diplomaticexchanges. the Cod Warsbetween Iceland and its neighbors).Canada. 380). Although democraciesrarely. How far can we lower the violence thresholdwhile retainingthe strong dyadic relationshipbetween democracyand peace? Weede (1992.In such conflicts. NOTE:Data as in Table 1. Temporalmismatchesand fictitious dyadic opposition in multipolarwars may occur among nondemocraciesand politically mixed dyads as well. Manyof the MIDs betweendemocraciesarefisheriesdisputes(e. one should be careful aboutreclassifyingdeviant cases without reexamining other is consistentwith the idea of a near-perfect relationship. United States Syria Pakistan Pakistan Turkey War Spanish-American Lithuanian-Polish WorldWarII Years 1898 1919 1941-1944 AnomalousDyad Years 1 1 24 Israel India India Cyprus Total Palestine Second Kashmir Bangladesh Turko-Cypriot 1948 1965 1971 1974 1 1 1 1 30 order. Countries1 and 2 are listed in alphabetical as a democracyin 1898 has been questionedby Ray (1993).foundno militaryconflictsbetweendemocraciesbetween 1962 and 1974. no major military interventions(i. Obviously. by in is If we look at all the interventions this dataset.e. the relationship no longerperfect. United Kingdom. Table2.g.correctingfor temporal democracies. using data with a thresholdof 100 dead.

Empiricalfindings such as those in Tables 1 and3 have frequentlybeen questioned on the basis that the dyad years do not representindependentobservations. at most. we find a single case of armed conflict between two democracies(Indiaand Pakistanin 1989) and little difference between nondemocraticpairs and the mixed dyads. On the other hand. in a sense. althoughthe relationshipis not evidence war.The theory of the democraticpeace does not assume thatjoint democracywill eliminate all conflict."But this is not a questionthatcan be settled a priori.But we shouldalso assumethatthe nonviolent normsof democracieswill interveneto preventfurtherescalation. Conversely. for instance. This is. Just as we have asked whetherthe dyadic democraticpeace holds at lower levels of violence. For this dataset. the ratio of war incidence among democraciesto that among nondemocraciesincreases from 2:5 to more than 2:3.If two countriesare at war in year t. a stronger finding thanthe one in Table 1 because the violence thresholdis lower. If we lower the threshold of democracy minus autocracyto zero. To eliminate this problem.or is fundamentally severity.the time span for the Uppsaladatais much shorterthanfor the COW data. Similarly. more inclusive than the COW data but not as inclusive as the MID data. duration. we eliminateall wars betweendemocraciesexcept Finlandversus the Western democraciesin 1944.once a conflict that has brokenout betweencountriesa andb.Thusboth datasets providesupporting nearlyas strongas for interstate for the dyadic democraticpeace.The thirdline of the tabletests the dyadicrelationshipon the disputesdata.arguingthat"thequestionof how warsbegin differentfrom the questionsof why wars grow in size.Duringa war. the chancesaremuchbetterthatthey will remainat war in year (t + 1) than that two new countrieswill go to war. thereis a higherprobability the conflict if will spreadto countryc (particularly this is a neighboringor allied country)thanfor an entirely new conflict to startbetween c and d.where we also find the least conflict for double democraticdyads. and we should expect some conflicts to develop militaryovertones. and a decision to stay in a war ratherthangive up or withdrawfromconquestmay be a resultof the same forces that made war break out in the first place.Poland-Germany 1939. We may call these two forms of dependencybetween the units dependenceon the past and simultaneousdependence.Thus.Hegre /PEACE AND DEMOCRACY 289 Apartfrom the higher risk of coding errorin the MID data.ThusWorldWarII is reduced in to one dyad year. at this level of democracy.decision makers are constantlyforced to reexamineits costs. Bremer's approachhas the disadvantageof to reducinglong wars with many participants a single dyadic observationor. if severalcountriesenterthe war on the first day. it is unreasonableto expectjoint democracyto eliminateall militarizedconflict down to the level of force found. for In the secondline of Table3.Gleditsch. a few. This is anothercase of temporalmismatchbetween Polity and COW because Finland'schange to a high level of democracyoccurredafter the end of the war. Bremer (1992.the correlation may be perfect. we may ask if the relationshipvaries with differinglevels of democracy. Anotherproblemwith Bremer'swork is that his censoring is inconsistent: he eliminates dependent cases of war but not . 320) limits his investigationto the dyad years thatoccuron the first day of a war. in the Cod Wars.if we raise the level of democracyminus autocracyfrom 3 to 8. we test the dyadicrelationship the Uppsalaconflict datafor the post-ColdWarperiod (1989-1994).

78 Militarized disputes.17 . autocracy . Democracyis definedas 3 The line for militarized indicesin the correctedPolity III dataset.12 . 1816-1994 .02 .17 . 1989-1994 .05 .68 .The dataon arm interstatedisputesis from Singerand Small (1994).04 .87 1.06 .1816-1992 war NOTE:The line for interstate is repeatedfromTable1 for purposesof comparison. Each dyad is countedseparatelyfor each year.01 Armedconflict.61 Interstate war.38 .51 .05 .t) \C TABLE3 of DemocracyandDyadic ArmedConflict (percentage dy Typeof Anned Conflict Missing Regime Data or One No Two Democracies Democracy Democracies Regime Transition Tota .

also Beck and Tucker 1996).Rummel (1995) has complained. tests for spuriousnesswould be superfluous-unless a control variablewas to proposedthatin itself had a perfectrelationship the dependentandthe independent variable. Table4 confirmsthat war occurs much more rarelyin jointly democraticdyads. Here.with some justification. The numberof anomalouscases is reduced.Some of this controversyis no doubtdue to confusionabout the meaning of warlike. we have cross-tabulated democracywith onsets of dyadic war and onsets of war.The point thatdemocraciesareno less prone to participatein war than other polities was made in an influentialarticle by Small and Singer (1976).Although the frequencyof dyadic war onsets is naturallylower than the dyadic incidence of war. no evidence has been found for considering the relationshipspurious."basedon conflict data from the end of the 1950s andpoliticalvariablesin A Cross-PolitySurvey(Banks and Textor 1963).Raknerudand Hegre (1997) tackle this problemin a radicallydifferentway by modellingthe interstatedyad as a continuous process (cf. 1993.Hegre /PEACE AND DEMOCRACY 291 dependentcases of peace.Even if the relationshipis just very strongratherthanperfect. More recently. but the first half of the table is a less drastic solution in which all new conflict dyads are countedin their first year. In Table4. For instance. This leads to results that also confirm the democraticpeace while seeing it in connection with war diffusion and recurrence. Ray (1995) and Benoit (1996) are also revisionists on this issue. and the frequencyof war onsets even lower. 1983b) and Rummel (1983) have drawnthe same conclusion.Gleditsch. Haas (1965. ARE DEMOCRACIES MORE PEACEFUL? There has been much more controversyaroundthe propositionthat democratic countriesareless warlike. mainly because the Finnishwar dyads from 1941 to 1944 are eliminated. His analysis lumps dyads continuingat war and dyads in the process of joining an ongoing war with dyads at peace. Most of those who have addressedthis topic in the decade since the debatewas reopenedwith the seminalarticlesby Doyle (1983a.the searchfor single thirdvariablesseems unpromising. 1996. Oneal et al. Gleditsch 1995a). we choose a simpler approach. if the relationshipbetween democracyand peace was perfect. We take as our startingpoint whether or not democracies participatein war more comparingthe results obtainedin Tables 1 and 3 with the resultsof an analysisin which we have eliminatedthe unitdependency for war (butnot for peace). The assumptionis thatif we find the same relationshipfor the incidence of war and the onset of war.Indeed.but the empirical evidence in his 1983 article has been questioned because of its limited empiricalbase. that he was not alone in finding democraciesto be more peaceful. . Bremer 1992. The second half of the table correspondsto Bremer's radical reduction of conflict dyads to new conflicts only.Rummelis a majordeviant.our confidencein the results will increase. In a companionarticle from our project. The dyadic relationshipbetween democracy and peace has been subjected to various tests of thirdvariables(Maoz and Russett 1993. 319) found "a slight but consistenttendencyfor democraticcountriesto have less foreignconflict thanundemocratic political systems.

02 .butdyadicconflictis countedonly for the firstyearof the conflict. 36579f).00 .43 .36 .00 (+) . Dataas in the firsthalf of the table. 1989-1994 .82 .05 (-) . Conflictdataanddemocracydataas in Tables 1 and 3.48 .59 .TABLE4 Democracyand Dyadic Onsetsof ArmedCo Typeof ArmedConflict MissingRegime One Two No Data or Democracies Democracy Democracies RegimeTransition Tota Dyad years with onset of new dyadicconflict (%)a .05 (+) Interstate . Each dyadis countedseparatelyfor each year dyad.40 Militarized disputes. To determinewhich dyadic armedconflicts and which armedconflicts were new in 1989. a.01 (+) . we used Keesing'sContemporary .1816-1992 .05 (-) .28 we have limitedthe conflict frequenciesto two significantdigit NOTE:To avoid exaggerated accuracy. Archives(1989. 1989-1994 .The 1988 list is moreinclusive (no lower thresholdon violence).18 .1816-1992 .32 Dyad yearswith onset of new conflict (%)b .53 Militarized disputes. b.03 .06 war. 1816-1994 . 1816-1994 .03 (-) . so it cannotbe used to extend determinewhich cases of incidencein 1989 were also onsets.01 .02 (-) Armedconflict.01 . we co project. a plus or a minussign to indicateif the unrounded figureis higheror lower. conflict.06 (-) .02 (war.00 (+ .61 .00 (+) .00 Armedconflict.04 (+) Interstate .

1989-1994 Militarizeddisputes.14 NOTE: Conflict dataand democracydataas in Tables 1 and an analysis dividing the war data by time periods (not reproducedhere). 1816-1992 Onset of new dyadic conflict Interstate war. This patternappearsto continueinto the post-ColdWarperiod.0 6.we have computeddatafor the incidence of conflict as in well as for the two forms of onset.1 ."they also concluded that the evidence for the dyadic thesis was much stronger.At least for the periodas a whole. democraciesparticipatedsignificantly less frequentlyin war than nondemocracies.0 25. Although Rousseau et al.04 . respectively. 1989-1994 Militarizeddisputes.9 1.1 3.This idea was testedwith a negativeoutcome.9 1. colonial and imperial wars).56 .36 .5 4.20 .3 4.9 2.3 3. 526) found the previous evidence in supportof the conventionalwisdom at the nationallevel "actuallyquite thin.8 33.Hegre/PEACE AND DEMOCRACY 293 TABLE5 Democracyand ArmedConflict:The National-Level Relationship(percentageof countryyears with conflict) Missing Numberof RegimeData Conflict All or Regime No Dyad Dyad Years Years Democracy Democracy Transition Typeof ArmedConflict X2 p Incidenceof conflict Interstate war.6 5. 1816-1994 Armed conflict.this figureexaggeratesthe relativewarparticipation democracies significantlymorefrequently. 8.1%.43 .02 .3 2.928 182 8 2.61 . because nondemocratic opponentsin colonial wars are not countedas separateactors. we found that during the cold war.8 1.1 2.7% versus 6. thereis no clear trend in the war participationof democraciesrelative to nondemocracieswhen the level of democracyis variedsystematically.0 1. The frequencyof participation waror militarized interstatedisputes (whether measuredby incidence or onset) is not very different between democraciesand nondemocracies.92 .6 .718 5. 1816-1992 5. However. For extrasystemic wars (i.06 .3 1. 1816-1994 Armed conflict.6 14.632 266 31 2.8 26. 1989-1994 Militarizeddisputes.The bulk of the large-n studies agrees with Chan (1984).85 3. It mightbe suspectedthatthe "norelationship" findingwas dependenton the cutoff for the level of democracy.45 5.Perhapsa positive relationshipbetween democracyand for peace would emergeif the requirement democracywere more stringent.7 24.86 . 1816-1994 Armed conflict.2 16.2 32. .5 639 43 3..85 .78 .8 2.38 . democratic countries were at war of However.0 .6 1.e. The same problemof dependencybetweenunits occurs at the nationallevel. 1816-1992 Onset of new conflict Interstate war.Gleditsch. who found that "relativelyfree" countriesparticipated in warjust as much as the "less free"-6.6 2.03 .8 22. Therefore.8 Table 5 gives our national-levelresults for the correctedPolity III data using the threeindicatorsof conflict.33 2.5 32. (1996.9 28.6 1.8 24.6 .0 26.4 4.of all country years between 1816 and 1980.

of course. and Singer (1991) has suggested that therehas been a process of displacement in the later stages of the cold war: war was reduced in the central and nations system-not just amongdemocracies.It wouldprobablyrequiredataaboutwho kills whom and where.24% of the populationin democraticcountrieskilled peryearin warin this centuryto . Although democracieshave a slightly higher incidence of war. notably because of the absence in democraciesof genocide (Rummel 1994) and famine (Sen 1994) and the lower incidence of civil war (Ellingsenand Gleditsch 1996). For instance.butamongindustrial postindustrial In the periphery. The lattermeasureof war participation into the war throughtheiralliances. Table4).from .as with Belgium andthe Netherlands. even if they sufferednegligible losses (Small and Singer 1982).countrieswith extremely small losses may be counted as being at war because they form partof a coalitionandhave more than would be consistent with lower war losses in democracies. Some of the war participation of the allied statesis fairlylimited.There is a great deal of other evidence that democracies value human life more highly.56%for totalitarian countries(usingCOW He data).000 troopsinvolved. also compatiblewith an argumentthat democraciesare strongerin war and technologicallymore advancedandbetterable to deploy force at greaterdistances.althoughnot for the value "high"on eitherof the controlvariables. not only continuedbutwas accelerated majorpower war generally.These data are even compatiblewith Galtung's(1996) notionthatdemocraciesaremoreself-righteousand thereforemore belligerent.How to properlytest an argument relatingwarseverity to peacefulnessremainsunclear.Stam (1996) shows thatdemocraciestend to win the wars they participatein.except those thatentera war on the first day. Rummel (1995) also found thatthe negative relationshipbetween democracyand relativehuman losses in war held up when controllingfor the level of economic developmentor capability. by rivalries.If Singer's argumentwere valid (and we tend towardskepticism). Rummel arguesthat it is unreasonableto equate countryyears of majoractorsin WorldWarII with minorborderskirmishes. they have fewer onsets of new does not include countriesbrought conflict.9 arguesthatstudyingthe frequencyof warmeansaskingthe that most of the fighting occurs on the opponent's territory. and such datahave not yet been compiled. This finding correspondsto the lower frequencyof onsets of war in mixed dyads relative to nondemocratic dyads (cf.althoughRummelhas indeedshownthattheirpopulationsareon the average less negativelyaffectedby war. Yet anotherway of reconcilingthe lack of warbetweendemocracieswith the high of war participation democraciesis to arguethatdemocraciesare unlikely to initiate 9. which arelisted as full-fledged combatantsin the KoreanWareven thoughtheir casualtieswere only about 100 each (Small and Singer 1982). But we cannotconclude from figures on war losses alone thatdemocraciesare more peaceful in theirforeign behavior. Rummel's (1995) finding aboutdemocraciessufferingless violence in war is. This is seen clearly when we comparedata on the incidenceof conflictwiththose on the onset of new conflict in Table5. Even for participants who do qualify for the thresholdlosses. . One fairly simple explanationfor the high overall participation democraciesin of war is the tendencyfor democraciesto ally in war.294 OF JOURNAL CONFLICT RESOLUTION Rummel(1995) has shown thatdemocraticcountriessuffermuch smallerlosses in war than nondemocratic countries.

such problemsemergequite appearsthatdemocraciesareeven moreproneto initiatewars than Small and Singer's resultsindicate. Rummel (1979) did not posit a correlationbetween freedom and the frequency of involvement in war because free states by their very example represented a subversive challenge to authoritarian totalitarian and systems.nondemocraciesshould be expected to initiate more wars. identifying the initiatormay requirean cutoff. the War(1980)-were all initiatedby nondemocVietnamWar(1965). B will be the initiatorin Small and Singer's (1976) terms. as when Germany process of escalation in many small steps. Israelin 1948) in which mutualthoughtsof preemptionmust have been so pervasive that the coding of war initiationbecomes highly suspect. Table6 lists all warsbetween 1816 and 1994 involving democraciesfrom the start warsin the Small-Singerdataset. In four other wars (United Statesvs. of the war. Pakistanin the Second in Kashmir Warin 1965.If A arbitrary intendsto attackB. who foundthatin the 19 wars in which democraciesparticipated. Vietnamin 1965. the Korean War (1950).Looking at some of the wars initiatedby democracies. democracieswould appearto initiate violence very rarely. in war Turkeyvs.the possibility of preventivewar muddiesthe waters. andArmeniavs. least in the modern era. This result should have been adjustedfor the numberof democraciesin the system. The six most violentinterstate World War II (1939). the threshold attacked Polandin 1939. government massacre.The tableincludes30 of the 75 interstate Twenty-two of these.and Syriavs. Thus all eight wars initiated by democracies in the post-WorldWarII period seem ratherirrelevantto determiningthe peacefulness of democracies.Gleditsch. Israelvs. it may be just as reasonable(or unreasonable) identifythe otherpartyas the aggressor.In some cases. warsin theentireCOWperiod-World WarI (1914). Azerbaijan 1991) an interstate was initiatedonly afterviolence had alreadystartedin the form of civil war. 66).they arenot averseto intervening escalatingthe disputeto the point where it can be settledby superiorforce. This idea was testedby Small and Singer(1976.Becauseat all timesthereweremorenondemocracies than democracies. Moreover. we find several protractedhigh-tension disputes (India vs.libertarian states would have to engage in defensive andreactiveviolence againstattemptsfrom nonlibertarian states to change the statusquo. The prior for of existenceof violencemay serveas a justification the intervention democracies. or 73%. In othercases. the Sino-JapaneseWar (1937). to When the Small and Singer(1976) list of initiatorsis examinedmore closely. they initiated(or were on the side of the initiator) in 58%. with a protracted is obvious. were initiated by a democracy. but the data from the post-1945 period alone cast considerabledoubt on the At notion thatdemocraciesare as war prone as nondemocracies. Pakistanover whatbecameBangladeshin 1971.To determine war initiationis a difficult coding task because it dependson identifyingthe countrythat in crosses the decisive borderline a processof escalation. but this involved more work collecting democracy data than they were at to prepared undertake thetime. or a coup d'etat.except in protracted or in conflicts.We have not analyzedin similardetail earlierwars initiatedby democracies.but if violence has started some form. but in discussing nations' peacefulness. andB strikesfirst to preventit. Indiavs. Therefore. Cyprusin 1974. When the oppositeis found.Hegre/PEACE AND DEMOCRACY 295 war. and the Iran-Iraq . its neighbors the 1956 and 1967 wars.

d.1816-1994 Initiator(s) Starting Year 1846 1856 1879 1884 1893 1897 1898 1900 War Mexican-American Anglo-Persian Pacific Sino-French Franco-Thai Greco-Turkish Spanish-American Boxer Rebellion Democracy Level 10 3 3 7 7 10 10 10 7 8 -10 1 6 4 10 -9 m.296 JOURNAL CONFLICT OF RESOLUTION TABLE6 Democracyand the Initiationof War.d.d. 1956 1962 1965 1965 1967 Sinai Sino-Indian Vietnamese Second Kashmir Six Day 1971 1973 Bangladesh Yom Kippur 1974 1982 1991 Turco-Cypriot Falklands Armenia-Azerbaijan 9 -7 -10 -10 9 -8 7 India Egypt Jordan SaudiArabia Turkey Argentina Armenia -7 9 -8 3 -7 -9 -7 3 9 Egypt India North Vietnam Pakistan Egypt Jordan Syria Pakistan Israel 10 10 -1 Cyprus United Kingdom Azerbaijan .d. -10 -7 -6 -10 -10 4 -6 Target(s) Country Mexico Persia Bolivia China Thailand Ottomanempire Spain China 1909 1912 Spanish-Moroccan First Balkan -6 -1 Morocco Turkey 1913 1914 1919 1919 1919 1919 1939 1948 Second Balkan WorldWarI Russo-Polish Lithuanian-Polish Hungarian-Allies Franco-Turkish Russo-Finnish Palestine 4 10 4 8 4 Yugoslavia/Serbia Greece Yugoslavia/Serbia Poland Lithuania Hungary Turkey Finland Israel m. 4 m. -4 -1 8 7 -4 8 -9 5 -4 1 2 -10 10 -8 10 9 9 Country United States United Kingdom Chile France France Greece United States United States United Kingdom France Russia Japan Spain Yugoslavia/Serbia Greecea Bulgariaa Bulgaria Austria-Hungary Russia Poland Czechoslovakia Rumania France USSR Syria Iraq Egypt Lebanon Jordan Israel China United States India Israel Democracy Level m.

only the first involved a democracy. the FirstBalkanWar. racies. as they did in four of these wars. For the remainingyears. Third. they tend to be on the reactiveside. When democraciesbecame involved.and the KoreanWar. makes no sense. Some interventionshave been justified with reference to stopping domestic violence or as promotingdemocracy. victim (Austria-Hungary Serbia in WorldWar I and Germanyvs.The war called RomanRepublic(1849). although mostly with other nondemocraciesas the initial victims. In one of the few 10. In the 1969 Israeli-Egyptian War.Althoughthey involved severaldemocracies. was initiatedby This France.but others are more commonly interpreted power politics. includinglargedemocracies. no War compiled. Most have takenit for grantedthat the systemic relationship could be deduced from the dyadic level (Singer and Wildavsky 1993) or fromthe nationallevel (SmallandSinger 1976).those testedby Bremer(1992)-could be translated the national level.Note that the two worldwars have also been excluded.the originalinitiatorand vs. and our own coding of the initiator. wars in the Correlatesof Wardata COW has no informationon initiation.Hegre /PEACE AND DEMOCRACY 297 TABLE6 Continued but NOTE: m. Finally.we have used Singer'supdateof the war datato 1992 (Singer and Small 1994). = missing data. on a. Of these three. at least in majorwars. Austria-Hungary). Poland in WorldWarII) were not democracieswhen the wars broke out. Such a statementwould require a more detailed analysis of the patternsof escalation and considerationof a widerset of wars. A partialexception is Schj0lset (1996). the Wallensteenand Sollenberg(1996) data on wars between 1993 and 1994. This is not tantamountto saying that democracies are more peaceful.Three wars had to be eliminatedfrom the COW list when the presenttable was War(1969-1970) and the Vietnamese-Cambodian (1975-1980). accordingto the COWdataset.d.theyjoined the target This addsforceto the contentionthatif democraciesparticipate thanthe initiator. what aboutcontrolsfor thirdvariables?Thattask is much more urgentat the nationallevel thanat the dyadic level becausewe arenot dealing with a perfector near-perfectrelationship. The same goes for the Crimeanwar.majorpowers. In the Israeli-Egyptian initiatoris named. But few if any studies controlfor thirdvariablesin a convincing manner.Democracyscores are from Polity III.Warsin bold printare those initiatedby democracies.Gleditsch.10 CONNECTING THE LEVELS LOGICALLY betweenthe dyadiclevel andthe nationallevel has been Althoughthe relationship the subjectof some debate.For instance.manyextrasystemicwarshave been War initiatedby democraciesengagedin colonialconquest. Greece and Bulgarianot coded by COWas initiatorsbut as participating the initiator'sside from the first day of the war.which was not one of the originalparties(Two Sicilies vs. in the post-World abroad conducted to II periodthereappear havebeen manymoremilitaryinterventions by democratic (Western)countries than by the Soviet Union and its allies.Many of the third variables controlled for at the dyadic to level-for instance.may fight war throughproxies.This table includes all interstate set involvingat least one democracyfromthe start. .Israel (9) and Egypt (-7) participated.Second. so this war has also been left out. rather at all.SmallandSinger(1982) have coded the initiatorvariable only up to 1980.therehas been little researchat the system level and very little discussion aboutthe links to the otherlevels.

this is a fairly realistic assumption. single nondemocracy at warwith all the democraciesin thecourseof theyear.QuincyWright'snotion([1942] 1965. To maintainthe equal war of that must be participation democraciesand nondemocracies. betweenthe levels becomesclearerwhen we formulateit formally. If a war occurs. double democracieswill be an even smallerminorityamongthe dyads.If an increasein the incidence of democracy over time is accompanied by an increasing rate of war between a democraciesand nondemocracies. severalof themwere far from democratic. But what about links between the levels at lower levels of As democratization? long as the democraciesare in a minorityamong the countries. the single nondemocracymust be at war. given complete democratization. and the national-levelquestion becomes irrelevant. Gulf Warof 1991 pointed in this direction.298 JOURNALOF CONFLICT RESOLUTION studies to addressdirectly the logical connections between two levels.if all countriesbecome democratic. althoughone might conceivablyimaginea UnitedNations of all countriesexcept one The going to war to rid the world of the last vestige of authoritarianism. see the problem. In other words. and this in turnlowers the level of violence in the system. considerthe simple case thatwar probabilityis independentof regime type. 266) that"thegreater the numberof sheep. relationship .the perspectivechangeswhenthe democraciesbecome a majority.the greaterthe value of war to the despots. The relationship a very simple model in which the political characterof the regime is the Assuming for The only factor. If there areN countries. yes to the dyadic question a logically implies a yes to the system-level question.So what is the net effect on war in the system? war Obviously. system with a higherproportionof democracies need notbe morepeaceful.This seems highly implausible. the betterhuntingfor the wolves" is consistent with this idea: the greaterthe numberof democracies.interstate will hardlyoccur any more.Of course. A greatershareof democraciesalso means a largernumberof mixed dyads with a higherprobabilityof war.If the intervalis as long as a year.the probabilityof an outbreakof war in a dyad in the course of a year is Tdyadandthe probabilityof a randomlychosen countrygettinginvolved in the betweenthe probabilitiesfor the two levels is a war in a year is rCnaon. argumentis easily generalizedfor more thanthese threecategories." First.we will show how parameters the differentlevels areinterrelated.we may ask what happenswhen thereis just one nondemocracyleft.and democracyin Iraqwas not a statedobjective of the war. we will assumethroughout no countrycan start a war againstmore than one othercountryin a given time interval. only a minorityof these countriesdeployedany force to speakof. To However.Iraq fought a coalition of no less than 29 countries (Wallensteenand Sollenberg1996). backedby a series of UN resolutions. Starr(1992) arguesthat a greaternumberof democraciesproducesa largernumberof democratic dyads. But this is not so obvious. it holds for 75 of the 118 "newwars.but the formulae quickly become very complex. DYADIC VERSUS NATIONAL LEVEL that In the developmentof a model.If this intervalis short.andit will take only a slightly higherincidence of war between democraciesand nondemocraciesto compensatefor the lack of war betweendemocracies.

is rCdyad proportional to 1/N.d)-1)/2 dyads consisting of two nondemocracies.1). (2) If we view ination as constant.and given dyadic probabilitiesfor the differentresulting dyads.1 tnation studiesbased on dyad years in this field routinelyassume thatidyad is Quantitative constant(conditionalon the independent variables)andthusrunthe risk of generating results. Maoz and Russett (1992.Because this reductionof the units of analysis involves a loss of 26% of the disputes in the dataset on militarizedinterstatedisputesand 20% of the conflicts CrisisBehaviorset (Brecher.andMoser 1988). the relativefrequencyof nationalonsets of warwas aboutone thirdof whatit was between 1851 and 1953. if we look at < nation < 1. N(1 .Thatthe reductionat the dyadic level is threetimes largerthan at the nationallevel is explainedby formula(1): the reductionat the dyadic level is due to the increasefrom an averageof 48 countriesin the firstperiodto 111 in the second. will returnto this point later. 0 < ndyad < 1/ to as rCdyad constant. This limitationresultsin a reductionof theirnumberof dyad years by nearly 88%.Gleditsch. the effect of increasing to N can be falsely attributed increasingdemocratization.1).it seems unfortunate reducethe units on the basis of variablesthatarepotentiallyhighly relevantfor the analysis.But.. Then there are Nd democracies and ThereareNd(Nd. N(1 -d) nondemocracies. unintentionally.Hegre /PEACE AND DEMOCRACY 299 dyad= N nation 7d 1 (1) iTnation= ndyad (N. the relativefrequencyof dyadic onsets of war was less than one tenth. dyads thatare eithercontiguousor include one or two majorpowers).d) politically mixed dyads. given now extend (2) to formulatethe relationship We will the countries' distributionon a dichotomous variable.d)(N(1 . Conversely. If the betweenthe is probabilityof war outbreak dependenton regime type. At the same time. betweenthe two levels. This means that ndyad is not a primitive parameter but has to decrease with (N increasingN! This is confirmedby empiricalanalysis:between 1954 and 1994. in the International Wilkenfeld.Moreover. this reduction also alters the relationship between idyad and and TCnation reduces the We dangerof spuriouscorrelation.e. the relationship of two levels will be dependenton the distribution democraciesand nondemocracies. And because 0 . such as democracy or nondemocracy. and N2 d(1 . Because the international system is steadily increasingin size over spurious time and the shareof democraciesis also increasingover time. 1993) use a subset of the populationof dyads that they call "politicallyrelevant"(i. We will write the share of democracies as d.1)/2 dyadsconsistingof two democracies. .rtnationis proportional N. we are to skepticalof this procedure. The relationshipbetween the probabilitiesat these two levels of analysis is thus expected to change from itnation dyad to 48-1 111 .

and N.we assume thatthe probabilityof war between two democracies tDD is 0. For these particular parameters.the onset of new dyadicinterstate war. = NDo . Based on these parameters.0105.d) lND Nd Nd Nd= ( Nd. was 27.For a start.andall measuresof militarized . the more democraciesin the system. On the other hand.I)CDD N(1 . divided by the numberof democracies. 'XN = E(N) 2E(NN)+ E(ND) 2(N (1 . the replacement of a dyad of two nondemocraciesby a mixed dyad of one democracy and one nondemocracymust involve a decreasein the frequencyof war. tD decreases with increasing d and lN increaseswith increasingd. Clearly.d) .1)/2) NN+ N2d(1- d) ND N( .0158.d) N( -d) l)nNN+ NdnND.300 OF RESOLUTION JOURNAL CONFLICT The probabilityof a war outbreakin a randomlychosen democracyis then the expected numberof democraciesE(D) in war outbreaksin a given year. The average system size. the frequencyof war declines monotonicallywith increasingd. the less war. Then the frequency of war is a function of JND. d and the probabilitiesof war outbreakin dyads with differentregime combinations TDD and 7tND: D E(D) 2E(DD) + E(ND) 2(Nd (Nd . long as lND < tNN (as we have found empirically to be the case for the onset of new interstate war and for all measures of armed conflict at a lower threshold of violence). if ND > tNN (as we have found empirically to be the case for the incidenceof war. the relationshipbetween the nationaland dyadic probabilitiesare proportional to N. we are most interestedin the proportionof the system's countriesin war outbreakin a year. + (3) In the same way. N. we have selected a set of 30 countries that have been membersof the international system for most of the period between 1853 and 1992. and NN = .varyingfrom 21 to 30. To illustrate our point. LEVEL VERSUS SYSTEM DYADIC At the system level.tD and functionsof d in Figure 1. d.and an outbreakof war in a mixed dyad will involve one democracy (as long as the assumptionholds that no countrystartsa war againstmore than one opponentin a given year). N(1-d) (4) (4) = (N (l -d)- As in (2). if tND < 1NN.7 tN countries.E(D) = 2E(DD) + E(ND) because an outbreakof war in a double democraticdyad will involve two democracies.1) /2) tDD + N2d( . where 7ND > tNN areplotted as > tDD. We may now express the probabilitynD of a democracyentering a war in terms of N. In otherwords. to The observed frequenciesfor "new disputes"(corresponding Table4) for this set are: tDD = .Therefore.0063.d)ND.d)(N (1 . the number of countries in the system.

irND. disputes). if all countries must decrease the frequency of but one are democratic.ation has to be 0. The formula can also be expressed as lnation = Nd2(7tDD- + 2lND + 7CNN) d(-TDD + 2NtND- + 2N7NN + 7LNN) NtNN . this expressionis quadratic. In that case. n..increasingdemocratization war in the system because the last (N . and 1tDD NOTE:Data as in Table 1 for a subset of 30 countries.1)7cDD 2Nd(l .CNN..d)nND (d ./PEACE ANDDEMOCRACY301 Hegre Gleditsch.if the conventional wisdom holds aboutthe dyadic andthe national-levelregularities. Imagine that we have no democraciesin the system at all. Given the Sample Values for N. but there are as yet no double democracieswhere the probabilityof war is zero. the frequencyof war in the system is a function only of the probabilityof war among nondemocracies.. the system-level relationshipis more complex.If we introduceone democracy. 0% 10% -.IN/. (6) In As a functionof d. On the otherhand. otherwords.1) remainingmixed dyads are replaced by double follows logically thattheremust be a parabola-shaped relationshipbetweenthe degree of democratiza- . the weighted average of nD and lCN.the frequency of war must go up because (N .+i 2E(DD) + 2E(ND) + 2E(NN) N N 1NN\ 2 ^DD+~jN d(\-d)nw^ D N 1) N( - d)(N (- - ) =~^\ ^ ^ 2 (5) = d(Nd . + + We see that if cDD = 0 and d = 1. 20% 30% 40/o 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% d Democracies --Non-Democracies Figure 1: Expected Share of Democracies and Nondemocracies in Onset of New Dispute in a Year as a Function of d.. from expressions (3) and (4): 7nation E(D) + E(N) N N +d(-1 .1) dyads now become politically mixed with a higher probabilityof war.1) + 1)nNN. This reasoning is confirmed by deriving lnaton.1)(N (d .

The derivativeof (6) with respectto d is the rate when d increases: of change of nation dnation(d) dd = 2dN(DD . the frequencyof warpeaks for d = .1 In Table7. as arguedin theprevioussection. the specialandnotveryrealisticcase of 7NN 0 andnDD = 0 (i. Anotherway to bypass the problemis to confine the empiricalanalysis to a regionthatis expandingonly moderately(suchas Europe)or to a fixed set of countries as in our numericalexample.Therelationship difficult.2NnNN+ 7NN).initial democratizationin the internationalsystem is followed by a slightly increasingfrequencyof war until 36% are democratized. with increasingdemocratization over is thus necessaryto limit the analysisin some way to keepN roughlyconstantif we want to test ourpropositions.But. the predictedprobabilitiesat the 11. given the observedproportions the dyadic level.on(d) is the value of d for which (7) equals0 (given values for = In the otherparameters).In the absence of such an extendedformula.2 ND + 7NN)+ (-tDD + 2NnND. 7tNN. (7) The maximizerof nat. predictedfigures correspond Although double democraticdyads have a considerablylower proportionof dyad years with new disputes(.We mightdo this by applyingsome variationof the politically and relevantdyads.e.0158). .. where we have plotted7nation a function of d in a our subset of countries.36.0063 vs. the expected frequency of war at the system level peaks for the same share of democraciesregardlessof the size of the system. and the assumptionof constantdyadic probabilitiesis untenable:both cnation ldyad are betweenthe levels is inextricably dependenton the size of the system. It can be derivedfrom (7) thatthe maximizerof 7nation(d) is independentof N when we assume that the dyadic probabilities CND.5. and 7DD are constants. the dyad maximizer is d = .Elsewhere. tied to the size of the system. These with Figure2. .and then it startsto decline. althoughwe have not worked out the formalrelationship.0105 and . For our numerical example. we reportthe 7nation at predictedby expression(5). In other words.using expression 6.we (Raknerud Hegre 1997) proposea flexible version of this procedurein which the irrelevantdyads are weighted down instead of being deleted. In the final column. makingstrictempiricaltesting of our argument The fact thatN has been constantlyexpandingin the time framecovered probably does not alter the relationshipbetween the levels shown here. the 140-yeartime span has been divided into fourperiodsof 35 yearseach for the 30-countrysample. hence any furtherdemocratization must replace a mixed with a pure dyad of one sort or the other. If the observedfrequenciesare representative.302 JOURNALOF CONFLICT RESOLUTION tion and the frequencyof war at the system level. as These points are illustratedin Figure2. we should expect the frequencyof war to increase initially and only decline when reachinga breakpoint. Thus. no war among similarregimes). We conductedan analysis similar to the one reportedin Table 7 for all Europeancountrieswith similarresults. at which point half the dyads are mixed.The shareof democracies d and the observedshareof nationyears with the onset of a new militarizedinterstate dispute has been computedfor each period.

This analysis may also shed some new light on the debatebetween Mansfield and Snyder (1995.not four as assumed. IrND/ nINN and IoDD NOTE:Data as in Table 1 for a subset of 30 countries.e. in general..12 national level. in a year).Fora nondemocracy. particular.can be or even if few of the warringpartiesfail to relatedto ongoing democratization attemptsat democratization. democraticpeace still has only a limited effect at the system level (cf. on the politicalmix of surrounding increasing depends For the numberof democraciesincreaseswarparticipation.Hegre/PEACE AND DEMOCRACY 303 25 % 20% 15% 10% 5% 0% 0% 10%0 20% 30% 40%0 500/ d 60% 70% 80% 90% 100% Figure 2: Expected Share of Countries in Onset of New Dispute in a Yearas a Function of d. a democracy. If a countrystartstwo separatedisputeswith two othercountriesin a year.and democratization. the parabolais much steeperthanpredictedbecause the dyadic probabilitiesare not constantover time: militarizeddisputesare less frequentfor all regimetypes afterWorldWarII. Enterlineand others have arguedthat their data do not supporttheir of argument. The observedproportions areconsiderablylower thanpredicted. Given the Sample Values for N. 1996) and Enterline (1996). Second.Gleditsch. the nationallevel are almost similar. and Wolf (1996) on democratization the dangerof war.the effect is the opposite.Mansfieldand Snyderarguethatthe process and in createinstabilities of political change.At 63% democratization. Mansfield and Snyder's argumentis strictly at the that increase war participation. The studies done to date are underspecifiedand fail to distinguishtwo 12. Figure 2). . The observedfrequenciesindicatea muchlower level of MIDs at recenthigh levels of democracy. Many currentarmedconflicts. Weede (1996).This is due to violationsof the assumptionthat no countrycan starta waragainstmorethanone othercountryin the given time interval (i. such as those in the formerYugoslaviaand in the Caucasus.From our analysis. reachthe thresholdfor democracyused here. it is clear thatthe war participation a given country countries.this is countedas two dyadicdisputesandthreenational-leveldisputes.

9 22.4 40.13 clearmonotonicrelationship war increase.2 32. In Figure3. .to system-level argumenthad been true.3 63.6 ObservedPnation (%) 24.6 14.8 27. gives the same overall impressionbut in a somewhatmore erraticfashion.4 33. is democratic. ceteris paribus. the relativenumberof democraciesandthe incidenceof war(measured by the fractionof countryyears at war to all countryyears) are plotted in the same shows a long-term No emerges:democratization graph.As thedemocratic when we consideronly independent groupof countriespasses above 50%.the conventionalwisdom at the dyadic and the national and levels leads to the conclusion that the relationshipbetween democratization the frequencyof war at the system level.2 30.4 33.2 43.the increasein relativedemocratization even greaterthanwhat we find states.6 33.then. We could also have measuredsystemic war by the frequencyof dyadic war.but the trendwould be very similar. SPREADING DEMOCRACY. rule statesunderdemocratic is also approaching all-time an the fractionof independent Because colonies and other dependentterritoriescan rarely be classified as high.304 OF JOURNAL CONFLICT RESOLUTION TABLE7 Observedand PredictedProbabilitiesof MIDs at the NationalLevel in a Set of 30 Countries Period 1853-1887 1888-1922 1923-1957 1958-1992 1853-1992 AverageN 27.and even thoughtherehas been a vast increasein independentstates (from 23 in the COW dataset in 1816 to 186 in 1994). Plottingthe war data on an annualbasis. SPREADING PEACE? If the simple dyadic. as noted earlier.7 d (%) 22.8 29. shouldhaveprovidedconsiderable cause for optimism-leaving ratization instabilitiesassociatedwith the democratization aside the issue of short-term process. the increasing in democratization "the reported manystudies.6 25.7 27.should be parabolic. by a relativeincreasein the frequencyof interstate before the startsworkingin the oppositedirection.The absolutenumber effect of democratization of democraticcountrieshas never been higher. The peakof waractivityaround1940 followed a long anddrasticdecline 13.8 22.but the amountof interstate appearsto increaseand then to decline after WorldWarII. However.1 29.we should expect it to be war accompanied.andparticularly thirdwave"of democsince 1974. we might reasonably hope that it should have consequencesfor the level of violence in the system as a whole.4 differenteffects of democratization: effect of the processof changefor the country the itself and the effect of a changingpolitical environment. more than 25% of all randomlyselected pairs will have ruled out war among themselves.In tracing the historicalpatternfrom the birthof moderndemocracy.7 Predicted rnation (%) 32. At this level. not shown here.

this might seem to be wide of the mark. in examining the changes between neighboring periods.Gleditsch.the worldbecame more democraticand also more war prone.Hegre /PEACE AND DEMOCRACY 305 70% 60 % 50% - 40 % 30% 20 % 10% 0% o so ' '0 so %o o oo o' o 0 r- o0 00 oo0as o ' ' 0 '0 0 '0 '0 '0 > \c0 Yr-a o 'I so '0 ' 0 Year Figure 3: Relative Number of Democracies in the World and Incidence of War. If we assume nND and nNNtobe constant over time and equal to the dyads over the entiretime period. at least in Europe).All this is broadly consistent with the hypothesized curvilinearpatternif we fix the turningpoint between 1910 and 1920.then with less.But if we regardthe two world wars as essentially one conflict (not an unreasonableassumptionin view of the fact that the actors and conflict lines were largely the same. A similar approachis taken in Figure 4.whereincreasingdemocratization. Earlierperiodsof war accompanied periods of democratization. expected. Here the frequencyof war in the system (measuredby the percentage of countryyears at war) is plottedagainstthe degree of democracy(measuredby the percentageof countryyears accountedfor by democraticcountries)for each of six time periods. where the two variables are plotted on separateaxes. it became more democraticand peaceful.we get a predictedpattern of war thatpeaks in the late 1920s and generallydeclines from then on. Wardata accumulatedby countryand by decades.the midpointof that conflict lies somewherein the late 1920s and early 1930s. frequencyof war in mixed andpurenondemocracy using the actualfigures for d (the fractionof democracies). . Because war peakedonly 20 years laterandthe late 1920s were in fact quite a peacefulperiod.The firstfive timeperiodseachcover 35 years.Figure4 shows thatfor the first 100 years. 1816 to 1994 (%) NOTE: Data as in Table 1. After the world wars.Nevertheless. Countriesin transitionor withoutcodes in Polity have been excluded. the curve as a whole may (with some imagination)be characterizedas as parabolic.butthe final periodcovers only the postcoldwarera. in the level of democracyin the 1920s and 1930s. firstassociatedwith more war. we can simulate it. Although it is difficult to predicttheoreticallywhere the breakpoint might occur. we find too little war in the thirdperiodand too little democracyin the fifth for the patternto be completely consistentwith our theoreticalexpectations.

5% I 10% I I I I I15% 20% 25% 30% 35% Democratic Percentof Country-Years 1 40% I 45% Figure 4: Degree of Democratization by War Incidence at the System Level. a simple monotonic relationship must follow at the system level. The periods include the following: I. and the labels have as been addedafterward an indicationthatthey seem to make some substantivesense.WorldWarI (1885-1918). They first report that the proportion of double democracies is positively related to system conflict (Maoz and Abdolali 1989. anocratic. When broken down into two subperiods. The tests reported in the empirical part of the article generally reflect the same lack of attention to possible curvilinear relationships. although only a small proportion of the variance was accounted for (p. Post-Congressof Vienna (1816-1850). The Cold War(1954-1986). IV. It is tempting to suggest that some kind of system shift has occurred.WorldWar II (1919-1953). This study is not so relevant here because it posits a positive relationship between democracy and peace at the national and dyadic levels. III. 27). 26) and that this held even when corrected for autocorrelation (p. . perhaps at the end of the long European conflict known as the two world wars or perhaps at the end of the cold war. Post-ColdWar(1987-1994). The level of democracy in Europe is now higher than ever before. 27). Because Europe has accounted for so much of the world's war in the previous periods (Gleditsch 1995b). Anotherimportant studyat the system level (Maoz 1996) deals morewith systemic changesand its causes thanwith consequencesof regime type measuredat the system level. was arbitrarily made into five periodsof 35 years each. V. but the proportion of double democracies had a negative effect on the number of wars. autocratic) against the occurrence of militarized interstate disputes between 1816 and 1976. Obviously. the relationship between the degree of democracy and conflict was found 14. II. 1816 to 1994 (%) NOTE: Data as in Table 1 and Figure 1. although it would appear that these authors also think that the systemlevel hypothesis is a logical extension of the dyadic-level hypothesis alone.14 Maoz and Abdolali (1989) tested regime type (democratic.306 JOURNALOF CONFLICT RESOLUTION 12% - 10%) 8%6%- 4%2% 0% 0% I 1 . up until the end of the cold war. andVI. The initialdivision. This shift could be related to the fact that democratization has reached such a high level-at least in certain regions-that there is a lack of opportunities for war. this could explain the recent decline in interstate war. ItalianandGermanUnification(1851-1884). In one of the few studies at the system level. then.

theoreticallymeaningful.Bremer.This is reminiscentof the famous early findings by Singer and associates of differences between the 19th and the 20th centurieswith regardto the influence of alliances and capabilitydistribution.Hegre /PEACE AND DEMOCRACY 307 to be differentin the 19th and 20th centuries.whereasmorerecentlydemocratization based on the with decreasingviolence. a power preponderance found a balance-of-power more suitablefor the 20th century.see McLaughlin(1996).and Stuckey (1972) model seemed but model of peace to fit the 19thcentury. 16.15 Such are unsatisfactory because "century" not a theoreticalcategory. Once again.measuredfor instance by the time it takes to travel between two randomly picked members of the interstate system.Democracies have fewerbattlefatalities. Gleditsch 1995a). At the nationallevel. was associatedwith increasing For most of the period understudy. the question of war initiation is marredby problems of interpretation. thatdemocraciesare less aggressivecannotbe ruled out. Clearly. the questionhas not been exploredmuch in previous studies. relationship inferenceis difficult.The "shrinkingworld"might be one such variable.When the is findings difference between centuriesis interpreted a question of crossing a thresholdof as in democratization the international the shiftin therelationship warbecomes to system. who finds more supportfor a linearthan a curvilinear betweendemocracyandpeace atthe systemiclevel butcautionsthatatthis stage of herresearch.therehas been little theoreticalor empirical researchof this kind. This is in line with ourtheoreticalargument ly We and national-levelrelationships. Because there is more war between neighboringand proximatestates (Bremer1992. in democraticstatesare aboutas proneto participate waras otherstates. Singer and Small (1968) found thata high numberof alliancestendedto be associatedwith peace at the system level in the 19thcenturybut with warin the 20th century. Ourown empiricalevidence confirms most previousstudies in suggestingthatover the periodcoveredby the COWproject. To date. we might take all of Bremer's third-variabletests and translate themto the system level. or at least certain dyadic15. the evidence is mixed.16 SUMMARY The evidence for the democratic peace is overwhelmingat the dyadiclevel. possibility At the system level. butthe shiftis unlikelyto follow the calendarquiteso neatly. This mightoutweigh the effect of democratization influencethe relativesize of the probabilities7ND and or startsto producepeace at the nNN. Double democracyis virtuallya sufficientconditionfor nonwarin the dyad.democratization occurssimultaneousviolence betweenstates. . For a first attempt.Gleditsch. surmisethatthe world.Singer. the Finally.butit is not obviouswhatthis impliesfor theirpeacefulness. moving the breakpoint at which democratization system level. The war participationof democracies is inflated by their tendency to ally in war. What about controlsfor thirdvariablesat the system level? The issue has hardly been touchedin the literature.the empiricalpatternfound in Figures 3 and 4 the might be very differentif we had incorporated influence of other variables.we mightexpect a higherfrequencyof waras countriescome closer to each otherin termsof the time andcost expendedin interaction.

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