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Security Development

Violent Straw Men? Sex Ratios, Conflict, and a Methodological Disconnect

Kashmiri women watching a rally in Srinagar, courtesy of Kashmir Global/flickr

This article was originally published April 23 2014 by New Security Beat, the blog of the Environmental Change and Security Program (ECSP) at the Wilson Center.

The emerging subfield of “security demographics” is interested in how demographic trends, such as youth bulges, high or low fertility rates, and sex ratios affect the security and stability of nation-states and regions. In our research, Andrea Den Boer and I have attempted to show that abnormally high sex ratios – situations where there are significantly more men than women – have been a security concern in the past and may affect security and stability in the future.