The Diplometrics Program has built and released databases on international organizations, diplomatic exchange (embassies), and treaties monitored by the United Nations, including the Diplomatic Representation Database (DDR). The Diplometrics Program has also developed tools to help visualize and structure the data, such as the UN Voting Coincidence Dashboard. This data feeds a research agenda that is interested in measuring and modeling international relations and will inform the International Politics submodule of the International Futures (IFs) model.
The project expects to add to this data collection effort by producing data sets on non-state actors including international non-governmental organizations, multinational corporations, and others.
How was the DDR Database created?
DDR was created from the Europa World Yearbook. The volumes report data on bilateral diplomatic representation from 1960 through the most recent full year at any given time. Data were gathered at a directed-dyad level, which is how diplomatic exchange is represented in the reference volumes.
Which variables are included in the DDR?
The DDR data include both an embassy code, which includes nine categories of representatives (ambassador, charge´ d’affaires, ministers/envoys/consuls, Apostolic Nuncio, secretary of the People’s Bureau, interest desk interests served by, and unknown), and a focus code (single, multiple, or withdrawn/recalled/expelled). These codes are combined into a level or representation index.
How does DDR create new research opportunities?
Prior research has demonstrated the value of quantifying patterns of diplomatic relationships over time (Singer & Small, 1966, 1973) to understand patterns of international political behavior and country relationships. DDR builds on prior research by collecting data at a yearly level, disaggregating to capture as much representational variety as possible, and extending the dataset to the most recent full year at any given time. The new data provide additional opportunities for researchers who are interested in: (1) studying country behavior using long time-series analyses; (2) researching a wider variety of relationships than represented by other projects; and (3) considering relationships among a larger set of countries, including microstates and some semi-sovereign entities.
Moyer, Jonathan D., Sara D. Turner, and Collin J. Meisel. (2020) “What are the drivers of diplomacy? Introducing and testing new annual dyadic data measuring diplomatic exchange.” Journal of Peace Research, advanced online publication, September 29, 2020. DOI: 10.1177/0022343320929740.
The Economist. "A sub-Saharan seduction Africa is attracting ever more interest from powers elsewhere." The Economist: Briefing, March 9, 2019.
Meisel, Collin, Whitney Doran, Caroline Plante, and Marianne Hughes. "Does China have the most diplomatic pull on the planet?" The Hill, December 22, 2019.