Latent Control: Hidden Markov Models

Who controls territory in civil war? This is a central variable in the research and analysis of civil wars – yet it is incredibly difficult to measure. In this post, I model territorial control as a latent variable – an unobserved variable that presumes it is the cause of its indicators. This project models the latent variable across the entire country of Afghanistan using sub-national event data, a Hidden Markov Model, Uber’s hexagonal spatial index, and logistic spatial and temporal decay functions to treat serially correlated data in time and space. To view this project, please click here.