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The University of Alabama

UA Political Scientists’ Research on Armed Conflict Widely Referenced

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The University of Alabama’s department of political science was recently ranked seventh in the nation on research in the area of armed conflict by Essential Science Indicators and its ESI Special Topics Web site, a national in-depth analytical tool that offers data for ranking scientists, institutions, countries and journals.

Essential Science Indicators compared different scholars and institutions in terms of the number of times their respective work has been cited. Of the 20 institutions rated, the UA department of political science had the highest number of citations per published paper.

“Professor John Oneal from our department is the primary contributor to our success here and is ranked as the second most widely cited scholar in the field, but he is not our only success story,” said Dr. David Lanoue, chair of the department of political science. “Assistant Professor Doug Gibler produced one of the top 20 most cited papers on armed conflict published over the past two years. And Associate Professor Karl DeRouen has played an important role in our department’s overall standing.”

The ESI Special Topics Web site examined the literature on armed conflict over the past 10 years, and particularly over the past two years. The papers considered focus on topics such as ethnicity, insurgency and economic causes of civil war; liberal theories of democracy; political change in a post-Cold War climate; and other issues related to conflict within and between states.

The papers from the past two years include the role of natural resources in civil wars and factors +-influencing the causes and duration of conflict. Specific issues addressed include the Iraq War; conflict over diamonds; treatment of terrorist suspects at Guantanamo Bay and elsewhere; and public opinion on civil liberties versus security.

ESI covers a multidisciplinary selection of 11,000 indexed journals from around the world, enabling researchers to conduct analyses of research performance and track trends in science.

The UA political science department is part of the College of Arts and Sciences, the University’s largest division and the largest public liberal arts college in the state. Students from the College have won numerous national awards including Rhodes Scholarships, Goldwater Scholarships and memberships on the “USA Today” Academic All American Team.

The University of Alabama, a student-centered research university, is experiencing significant growth in both enrollment and academic quality. This growth, which is positively impacting the campus and the state's economy, is in keeping with UA's vision to be the university of choice for the best and brightest students. UA, the state's flagship university, is an academic community united in its commitment to enhancing the quality of life for all Alabamians.

  • CONTACT: Deidre Stalnaker, UA Public Relations, 205/348-3782,
  • SOURCE: Dr. David Lanoue, professor and chair of the UA political Science department, (office) 205/348-5981, (cell) 205/310-1863,