Event Title

Soil Skirmishes: A Study of Political Violence in Kenya and Uganda

Poster Number

067

Session Title

Crime and Political Issues

Presenter Information

Michael KendreeFollow

Document Type

Poster Presentation

Faculty Mentor

Brian McFadden, M.S.

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Department

Department of Interdisciplinary Studies

Description

This study seeks to determine if there is any underlying correlation between soil quality and the environment in the countries of Uganda and Kenya and outbreaks of violence within the two countries. Outbreaks of violence in Kenya and Uganda, spanning from 1997 to 2018, have been catalogued, geographically plotted, and briefly described. Various environmental and soil metrics have also been recorded, including soil pH, soil cation exchange, bulk density, water storage capacity, and precipitation levels. When analyzing the distribution of skirmishes, it is important to note any patterns related to their geographic locations. Especially in Uganda, there are geopolitical factors which might explain the distribution of skirmishes. For instance, friction with the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west of Uganda has always been a source of turmoil. Additionally, the presence of paramilitary and terrorist organizations, such as the Lord’s Resistance Army in Uganda and al-Shabaab in Kenya, will add to conflict frequency in the areas in which they operate. Given Kenya’s and Uganda’s status as developing nations, it is likely that overpopulation in urban areas coupled with underdeveloped infrastructure also contribute to strife and conflict. It is the goal of this study to evaluate to what degree environmental factors augment, or even influence, the prevalence and spread of violence with relation to the aforementioned geopolitical causes. This analysis will examine both constant (e.g., cation exchange) and temporal (e.g., precipitation per year) factors and will relate them to the prevalence of violence in a given timeframe and geographic area.

Course Assignment

GEOG 471 – McFadden

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Apr 24th, 12:00 AM

Soil Skirmishes: A Study of Political Violence in Kenya and Uganda

This study seeks to determine if there is any underlying correlation between soil quality and the environment in the countries of Uganda and Kenya and outbreaks of violence within the two countries. Outbreaks of violence in Kenya and Uganda, spanning from 1997 to 2018, have been catalogued, geographically plotted, and briefly described. Various environmental and soil metrics have also been recorded, including soil pH, soil cation exchange, bulk density, water storage capacity, and precipitation levels. When analyzing the distribution of skirmishes, it is important to note any patterns related to their geographic locations. Especially in Uganda, there are geopolitical factors which might explain the distribution of skirmishes. For instance, friction with the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west of Uganda has always been a source of turmoil. Additionally, the presence of paramilitary and terrorist organizations, such as the Lord’s Resistance Army in Uganda and al-Shabaab in Kenya, will add to conflict frequency in the areas in which they operate. Given Kenya’s and Uganda’s status as developing nations, it is likely that overpopulation in urban areas coupled with underdeveloped infrastructure also contribute to strife and conflict. It is the goal of this study to evaluate to what degree environmental factors augment, or even influence, the prevalence and spread of violence with relation to the aforementioned geopolitical causes. This analysis will examine both constant (e.g., cation exchange) and temporal (e.g., precipitation per year) factors and will relate them to the prevalence of violence in a given timeframe and geographic area.