Polity IV dataset, 2019. Use download_polity_annual to download the latest version of the Polity V data. This is the archived version of the last update of Polity IV.

polityIV

Format

An object of class tbl_df (inherits from tbl, data.frame) with 17562 rows and 40 columns.

Source

Marshall, Monty G., Ted Robert Gurr, and Keith Jaggers. 2019. "Polity IV Project: Political Regime Characteristics and Transitions, 1800-2018. Dataset Users' Manual. Center for Systemic Peace. Available at http://www.systemicpeace.org/inscr/p4manualv2018.pdf

Variables

cyear

Unique country code-year identifier.

polityIV_ccode

Numeric Country Code. Derived from the Correlates of War country codes, but with some small differences. These are:

## # A tibble: 12 x 5
## # Groups:   polityIV_country, polityIV_ccode [12]
##    polityIV_country      polityIV_ccode  cown min_year max_year
##    <chr>                          <dbl> <int>    <dbl>    <dbl>
##  1 Ethiopia                         529   530     1993     2018
##  2 Kosovo                           341   347     2008     2018
##  3 Montenegro                       348   341     2006     2018
##  4 Pakistan                         769   770     1947     1971
##  5 Sardinia                         324   325     1815     1861
##  6 Serbia                           342   345     1830     2018
##  7 Serbia and Montenegro            347   345     2003     2006
##  8 South Sudan                      525   626     2011     2018
##  9 Sudan-North                      626   625     2011     2018
## 10 USSR                             364   365     1922     1991
## 11 Vietnam                          818   816     1976     2018
## 12 Yugoslavia                       347   345     1991     2002
scode

Alphabetical Country Code. Derived from the Correlates of War country codes, but with some small differences. (See above table).

polityIV_country

The original country name in the Polity IV data.

year

The calendar year.

flag

From the PolityIV manual, 2018 edition:

Each case (country-year) is flagged with this trichotomous indicator denoting the coders' general confidence in the component variable scores assigned during a Polity annual update. A "0" code indicates reasonable confidence in the codings listed and is assigned to all historical cases. A "1" code indicates that codings covering a period of up to five years since a recent polity change are considered tentative as new authority patterns emerge and coalesce; these cases are subject to review and possible revision or "smoothing" ... A "2" code indicates that information is limited and, so, there are reservations concerning the code assigned, often because a polity change has occurred very recently and insufficient time has elapsed to render a confident judgement of the nature of authority changes; the codes assigned are considered a "best assessment" that require further review and possible revision (p. 12).

fragment

From the PolityIV manual, 2018 edition, pp. 12-13:

Polity Fragmentation: This variable codes the operational existence of a separate polity, or polities, comprising substantial territory and population within the recognized borders of the state and over which the coded polity exercises no effective authority (effective authority may be participatory or coercive). Local autonomy arrangements voluntarily established and accepted by both central and local authorities are not considered fragmentation. A polity that can not exercise relatively effective authority over at least 50 percent of its established territory is necessarily considered to be in a condition of "state failure" (i.e., interruption or interregnum, see below, that may or may not coincide with active civil war). Polity fragmentation may result from open warfare (active or latent) or foreign occupation and may continue in the absence of open warfare as a situation of de facto separation remains unresolved and unchallenged by the state. Examples of de facto separation are northern Cyprus since 1975 (with Turkish occupation), NagornoKarabakh in Azerbaijan since 1994 (with Armenian occupation), Republika Srpska in Bosnia since 1995 (with NATO occupation), Abkhazia and South Ossetia in Georgia from 1994, Chechnya in Russia from 1996 to 1999, and Kosovo in Serbia from 1999 to 2008 (Kosovo became a contested, independent state in 2008). This variable is coded beginning only in the year 2000; it is blank for all prior years (i.e., it has not yet been coded historically).

(0) No overt fragmentation

(1) Slight fragmentation: Less than ten percent of the country's territory is effectively under local authority and actively separated from the central authority of the regime.

(2) Moderate fragmentation: Ten to twenty-five percent of the country's territory is effectively ruled by local authority and actively separated from the central authority of the regime.

(3) Serious fragmentation: Over twenty-five percent (and up to fifty percent) of the country's territory is effectively ruled by local authority and actively separated from the central authority of the regime.

democ

Institutionalized democracy indicator, 0-10 scale. See PolityIV users' manual at http://www.systemicpeace.org/inscr/p4manualv2018.pdf

autoc

Institutionalized autocracy indicator, 0-10 scale. See PolityIV users' manual at http://www.systemicpeace.org/inscr/p4manualv2018.pdf

polity

Annual polity index (autoc - democ), including values for interruption (-66), interregnum (-77), and transition periods (-88). Higher values are more democratic. Note that the Polity users' manual (pp. 16-17) says that "The POLITY score was added to the Polity IV data series in recognition of its common usage by users in quantitative research and in the overriding interest of maintaining uniformity among users in this application. The simple combination of the original DEMOC and AUTOC index values in a unitary POLITY scale, in many ways, runs contrary to the original theory stated by Eckstein and Gurr in Patterns of Authority (1975) and, so, should be treated and interpreted with due caution. Its primary utility is in investigative research which should be augmented by more detailed analysis. The original theory posits that autocratic and democratic authority are distinct patterns of authority, elements of which may co-exist in any particular regime context. The inclusion of this variable in the data series should not be seen as an acceptance of the counter-proposal that autocracy and democracy are alternatives or opposites in a unified authority spectrum, even though elements of this perspective may be implied in the original theory. The POLITY variable provides a convenient avenue for examining general regime effects in analyses but researchers should note that the middle of the implied POLITY "spectrum" is somewhat muddled in terms of the original theory, masking various combinations of DEMOC and AUTOC scores with the same POLITY score. Investigations involving hypotheses of varying effects of democracy and/or autocracy should employ the original Polity scheme and test DEMOC and AUTOC separately.

polity2

Annual polity2 index, interpolating values for interruption (-66 is treated as NA), interregnum *-77 is treated as 0), and transition periods (prorated across the transition). Higher values are more democratic.

durable

Regime durability. See PolityIV users' manual at http://www.systemicpeace.org/inscr/p4manualv2018.pdf for details.

xrreg

Regulation of Chief Executive Recruitment. 1 = unregulated, 2 = designational/transitional, 3 = regulated. See PolityIV users' manual at http://www.systemicpeace.org/inscr/p4manualv2018.pdf for details.

xrcomp

Competitiveness of Chief Executive Recruitment. 1 = selection, 2 = dual/transitional, 3 = election. See PolityIV users' manual at http://www.systemicpeace.org/inscr/p4manualv2018.pdf for details.

xropen

Openness of Chief Executive Recruitment. 1 = unlimited, 2 = dual/transitional, 3 = election. See PolityIV users' manual at http://www.systemicpeace.org/inscr/p4manualv2018.pdf for details.

xconst

Executive constraints. 1 = closed, 2 = intermediate, 3 = slight to moderate limitation, 4 = intermediate, 5 = substantial limitations, 6 = intermediate, 7 = executive parity or subordination. See PolityIV users' manual at http://www.systemicpeace.org/inscr/p4manualv2018.pdf for details.

parcomp

Regulation of participation. 0 = Not applicable, 1 = repressed, 2 = suppressed, 3 = factional, 4 = transitional, 5 = competitive. See PolityIV users' manual at http://www.systemicpeace.org/inscr/p4manualv2018.pdf for details.

exrec

Executive recruitment (concept). 1 = ascription, 2 = dual (ascription + designation), 3 = designation, 4 = Self selection, 5 = gradual transition from self selection, 6 = dual (ascription + election), 7 = transitional or restricted election, 8 = competitive election. See PolityIV users' manual at http://www.systemicpeace.org/inscr/p4manualv2018.pdf for details.

exconst

Executive constraints (concept). Identical to xconst. 1 = closed, 2 = intermediate, 3 = slight to moderate limitation, 4 = intermediate, 5 = substantial limitations, 6 = intermediate, 7 = executive parity or subordination. See PolityIV users' manual at http://www.systemicpeace.org/inscr/p4manualv2018.pdf for details.

polcomp

Political competition (concept). 1 = suppressed, 2 = restricted 3 = Imposed transition, 4 = Uninstitutionalized, 5 = gradual transition from uninstitutionalized, 6 = factional/restricted, 7 = factional, 8 = electoral transition: persistent conflict/coercion, 9 = electoral transition: limited conflict/coercion, 10 = institutionalized electoral. See PolityIV users' manual at http://www.systemicpeace.org/inscr/p4manualv2018.pdf for details.

prior

Regime Polity code immediately prior to regime end date. The polity users' manual (p. 31) says "The PRIOR code may be a number from -10 to 10 or it may be a "begin state" code (88 or 99); it may not be a standardized authority code (i.e., -66, -77, or -88) as those are necessarily transitory conditions, not polities. The PRIOR code and the corresponding EYEAR and EDATE of the initial polity change (i.e., the first year record) in a multi-year regime change is repeated in the record of the final year of the multi-year change. This has been done to facilitate retrieval of information concerning the beginning and ending polities in multi-year regime changes, particularly when the D3 "flag" variable is used to select regime transition cases out of the larger dataset."

emonth

Polity end month. End month of previous polity, start of current.

eday

Polity end day. End day of previous polity, start of current.

eyear

Polity end year. End year of previous polity, start of current.

eprec

End date precision. 1 = exact date, 2 = assigned date (where more than one event could be used, or event persisted for more than one day), 3 = approximate date (month could be identified, but not the day), 4 = missing (year could be identified, but not month or day), 5 = unknown (not recorded 1995-98).

interim

The Polity users' manual says (p. 32) "Interim Polity Code: Interim Polity coding is used to denote (1) the short-lived nature of a distinct change in regime authority that spans only a portion of the coded year (i.e., a POLITY code) that would not otherwise be recorded due to the annualized structure of the Polity data, (2) a "transition" period of three years or less while a new Polity is being established (i.e., -88 code), (3) an "interruption" period of any length while a Polity remains under foreign authority (i.e., -66 code), or (4) an "interregnal" period denoting a collapse of central authority (i.e., -77 code). INTERIM is coded for each year between the end date (EDATE) of the previous Polity and the begin date (BDATE) of the subsequent Polity whenever standardized authority codes are used or when a series of incremental changes over a period of three years orless combine for a consistent POLITY change of three points or more ("consistent" here means that the incremental changes are all in the same general direction, positive or negative)."

bmonth

Polity beginning month. Beginning month of next polity, end of current.

bday

Polity beginning day. Beginning day of next polity, end of current.

eyear

Polity beginning year. Beginning year of previous polity, end of current.

bprec

Beginning date precision. 1 = exact date, 2 = assigned date (where more than one event could be used, or event persisted for more than one day), 3 = approximate date (month could be identified, but not the day), 4 = missing (year could be identified, but not month or day), 5 = unknown (not recorded 1995-98).

post

Regime polity code immediately after the current regime.

change

Net difference between prior and post. See PolityIV users' manual at http://www.systemicpeace.org/inscr/p4manualv2018.pdf for details. Note the code 88 denotes a "pre-existing polity" (for polities that existed before 1800), 96 indicates state disintegration, 0 a state in transition, 97 state transformation, 98 state demise, and 99 state creation.

d4

Regime Transition Completed. Variable D4 is a flag variable that designates (by code "1") the year of a regime change or the final year of a multi-year regime transition.

sf

State failure. Variable SF is a flag variable that designates (by code "1") every year during which a Polity is considered to be in a condition of "complete collapse of central authority" or "state failure" (i.e., -77). The variable SF is also coded "1" for years when a state disintegrates (variable CHANGE code "96") and when a profound revolutionary change in political authority occurs (during which the authority of the previous Polity is assumed to have collapsed completely prior to the revolutionary seizure of power and subsequent restructuring of authority).

regtrans

Regime transition. 3 = major democratic transition, 2 = minor democratic transition, 1 = positive regime change, 0 = little or no change, -1 = negative regime change, -2 adverse regime change, -77 state failure, -66 interruption, 96 = state disintegration, 97 = state transformation, 98 = state demise, 99 = state creation.

Standard descriptive variables (generated by this package)

extended_country_name

The name of the country in the Gleditsch-Ward system of states, or the official name of the entity (for non-sovereign entities and states not in the Gleditsch and Ward system of states) or else a common name for disputed cases that do not have an official name (e.g., Western Sahara, Hyderabad). The Gleditsch and Ward scheme sometimes indicates the common name of the country and (in parentheses) the name of an earlier incarnation of the state: thus, they have Germany (Prussia), Russia (Soviet Union), Madagascar (Malagasy), etc. For details, see Gleditsch, Kristian S. & Michael D. Ward. 1999. "Interstate System Membership: A Revised List of the Independent States since 1816." International Interactions 25: 393-413. The list can be found at http://privatewww.essex.ac.uk/~ksg/statelist.html.

GWn

Gleditsch and Ward's numeric country code, from the Gleditsch and Ward list of independent states.

cown

The Correlates of War numeric country code, 2016 version. This differs from Gleditsch and Ward's numeric country code in a few cases. See http://www.correlatesofwar.org/data-sets/state-system-membership for the full list.

in_GW_system

Whether the state is "in system" (that is, is independent and sovereign), according to Gleditsch and Ward, for this particular date. Matches at the end of the year; so, for example South Vietnam 1975 is FALSE because, according to Gleditsch and Ward, the country ended on April 1975 (being absorbed by North Vietnam). It is also TRUE for dates beyond 2012 for countries that did not end by then, depsite the fact that the Gleditsch and Ward list has not been updated since.