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Polity Data [electronic resource]: Persistence and Change in Political Systems, 1800-1971

Ted Robert Gurr , Erika Gurr
Computer Resource; Online
Ann Arbor, Mich. Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor] 1984
ICPSR (Series)
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AVAILABLE. This study is freely available to ICPSR member institutions.
This data collection consists of coded descriptions of the political structures of 144 countries worldwide (428 polities) in the period 1800-1971. One of four distinct but related datasets developed by Robert Gurr and his associates at Princeton University and Northwestern University to test hypotheses about the causes of conflict within contemporary nations and the correlates of institutional change, this study probes why some political institutions perform well and persist in response to challenges and crises while others change abruptly. Operational conceptualization of the study is provided with the description of salient characteristics of political systems in terms of the dimensions of authority patterns. Included are indicators of dimensions of authority, such as the openness of recruitment, decision constraints, participation, directiveness, and complexity, the degree to which each polity was autocratic, democratic, and anocratic, and the dichotomous indicator of coherence of a polity as consistently democratic. Additional data provide information on the circumstances of the birth and death of a polity, including the character of the polity and reasons for its termination. Three related studies focus on civil conflicts in polities: CONFLICT AND SOCIETY (ICPSR 7452), CIVIL STRIFE EVENTS, 1955-1970 (ICPSR 7531), and CIVIL STRIFE CONFLICT MAGNITUDES, 1955-1970 (ICPSR 7485).
Series Statement
ICPSR 5010
ICPSR (Series) 5010
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Also available as downloadable files.
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