Since World War II, civil wars have replaced interstate wars as the most frequent and deadly form of armed conflict globally. A new book, What Do We Know about Civil Wars? is edited by T. David Mason & Sarah McLaughlin Mitchell, and has several contributions from present and former PRIO researchers, all connected to PRIO's Centre for the Study of Civil War (2002-2012).
How do we account for when and where civil wars are likely to occur, when and how they are likely to end, and whether or not they will recur? In this timely book, leading scholars guide us through what the latest research tells us about the onset, duration, outcomes, and recurrence of civil wars, as well as the ongoing consequences of conflicts in war-torn countries such as Syria, Sudan, and Rwanda. In mapping out the current state of our knowledge about civil conflicts, the authors also identify what we do not know about civil wars. The book describes new directions in civil-war research, including transitional justice institutions in post-conflict environments, the “resource curse,” the role of women, and the relationship between the environment and civil conflict. The authors also highlight new trends in civil-war data collection that have enabled scholars to examine the geographic and temporal patterns of armed conflict. This authoritative text offers both an accessible and current overview of current knowledge and an agenda for future research.