Climatic Change

, Volume 99, Issue 1–2, pp 65–79 | Cite as

Climate change and violent conflict in Europe over the last millennium

Open Access


We investigate the relationship between a thousand-year history of violent conflict in Europe and various reconstructions of temperature and precipitation. We find that conflict was more intense during colder period, just like Zhang et al. (Clim Change 76:459–477, 2006) found for China. This relationship weakens in the industrialized era, and is not robust to the details of the climate reconstruction or to the sample period. As the correlation is negative and weakening, it appears that global warming would not lead to an increase in violent conflict in temperature climates.


Temperature Reconstruction Climate Model Simulation Violent Conflict Northern Hemisphere Temperature Serial Autocorrelation 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Economic and Social Research InstituteDublinIreland
  2. 2.Institute for Environmental StudiesVrije UniversiteitAmsterdamThe Netherlands
  3. 3.Department of Spatial EconomicsVrije UniversiteitAmsterdamThe Netherlands
  4. 4.Institute for Coastal ResearchGKSS Research CentreGeesthachtGermany

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