Analyzing the War in Ukraine Using R

Analyzing the War in Ukraine Using R

Analyzing the War in Ukraine Using R. An exploratory analysis of the conflict using the tidyverse and maps!

In 2014, Russian separatists in the Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts of Ukraine claimed independence. A conflict ensued between the self-declared Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics and the Ukrainian government. The conflict is very complex and involves innumerable variables. People have written books, articles, and all types of opinion pieces about the conflict. I was curious about what the data show.

After some effort, I stumbled upon The Humanitarian Data Exchange: https://data.humdata.org/. There’s a lot of really interesting data available there. Luckily for me, a very nice and fairly granular data set concerning the Ukrainian conflict was available. Each row in the data set represented a kinetic event. The data spans from the Euromaidan revolution of 2014 up to 2018. I read the data into R and munged it a bit by removing some columns I wasn’t interested in (I left that part out of the cod below). We’ll begin by checking the data for na’s (make sure you load the tidyverse!):

## read in the data 
conflict <- read_csv('conflict_data_ukr - Raw.csv')

## make.names on the columns
colnames(conflict) <- make.names(colnames(conflict))
## check for NA's in the column adm_1
sum(is.na(conflict$adm_1))#119
conflict[is.na(conflict$adm_1),]
##   all of the NAs in adm_1 are for the donets basin area which 
##   isn't contained in one oblast.
## replace NA's in adm_1 w/ 'Donets Basin Area'
conflict$adm_1 <- conflict$adm_1 %>% replace_na('Donets Basin Area')
any(is.na(conflict)) ## FALSE

The “adm_1” variable contained information on what oblast the event occurred in (think of an oblast like a large US county). I was concerned about na’s in that specific column. The first line of code told me I had 119 na’s there. I was able to subset the data in the second line of code and learned that all of the na’s were events in the “Donets Basin Area” based on the information in the “where_coordinates” column. I replaced the na’s in the adm_1 columns with “Donets Basin Area” and then renamed some columns:

## rename some columns 
conflict <- conflict %>% rename(gov.forces = side_a
                                , op.forces = side_b
                                , kia = deaths_a
                                , ekia = deaths_b
                                , civcas = deaths_civilians
                                , region = adm_1)

donbass data-visualization r data-science ukraine

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