Edward D. Lee; Bryan C. Daniels; Christopher R. Myers; David C. Krakauer and Jessica C. Flack
Armed conflict exhibits regularities beyond known power law distributions of fatalities and duration over varying culture and geography. We systematically cluster conflict reports from a database of 105 events from Africa spanning 20 years into conflict avalanches. Conflict profiles collapse over a range of scales. Duration, diameter, extent, fatalities, and report totals satisfy mutually consistent scaling relations captured with a model combining geographic spread and local conflict-site growth. The emergence of such social scaling laws hints at principles guiding conflict evolution.