Dangerous Dyads Revisited: Democracies May Not Be that Peaceful after All

Peer-reviewed Journal Article

Buhaug, Halvard (2005) Dangerous Dyads Revisited: Democracies May Not Be that Peaceful after All, Conflict Management and Peace Science 22(2): 95–111.

Abstract: In recent years, the quantitative international relations literature has increasingly paid attention to the potential problem of serially correlated observations in time-series cross-section (TSCS) data. Today, no study using TSCS data is published unless it manages to control for temporal dependence. Using Bremer's (1992) seminal “Dangerous Dyads” article as a starting point, this article has two ambitions. First, it seeks to explore whether the original results are replicable with new and updated data. Second, it aims to uncover whether Bremer's now unconventional choice of statistical model was decisive for his results. The analysis shows that despite clear evidence of serially correlated units, the alternative logit, GEE, and survival models yield relatively similar results. However, Bremer's finding of a monadic democratic peace is not robust to various operationalizations of democracy. His choice of democracy indicator thus seems to have had a significant influence on his conclusions, demonstrating that data selection can be as crucial as the choice of statistical model.


Halvard Buhaug

Halvard Buhaug

Research Professor at PRIO; Professor of Political Science, NTNU