We discuss how computational data science and agent-based modeling, are shedding new light on the age-old issue of human conflict. While social science approaches focus on individual cases, the recent proliferation of empirical data and complex systems thinking has opened up a computational approach based on identifying common statistical patterns and building generative but minimal agent-based models. We discuss a reconciliation for various disparate claims and results in the literature that stand in the way of a unified description and understanding of human wars and conflicts. We also discuss the unified interpretation of the origin of these power-law deviations in terms of dynamical processes. These findings show that a unified computational science framework can be used to understand and quantitatively describe collective human conflict.
A computational science approach to understanding human conflict
February 3, 2020