Trend 1: TYPES OF VIOLENCE
GRAPH 1: Violence by type and year
Over the past 17 years, political violence rates have grown. This graph displays how discrete types of violence have divergent patterns driven by different conditions across countries. In generally, violence rates stabilized from 1997-2010, yet 2011 and 2012 represent dramatic increases in violence. While this in part due to increases in violence in normally stable states- including North African countries, and the continued violence in large, unstable states- including Somalia, DR-Congo and Sudan, it is also due to the ability to harness information in a real-time coding environment, while the previous data were collected well after their occurrence.
1999 (followed closely by 2012) witnessed the highest proportion of battles between armed actors, largely due to violence in Angola, DRC and Sierra Leone. 2002 witnessed the highest proportion of violence against civilians, driven by several contexts including the Zimbabwean elections, Ugandan LRA activity, and the cessation of civil war in DRC which drove violence against civilians before peace talks. 2012 represents the highest proportion of riots, largely due to the North African activities, but also points to a general rise throughout Africa of civic protest. While each of these examples are true representations of violence in those states, they cannot speak to the overall story of violence on the continent, which is in fact a combination of these diverse narratives and processes.