Submissions/Wikipedia Neutrality Disputes Correlate with Political Instability

From Wikimania 2011 • Haifa, Israel

This is an open submission for Wikimania 2011.

Review no.


Title of the submission
Content disputes in Wikipedia reflect geopolitical instability
Type of submission (workshop, tutorial, panel, presentation)
Author of the submission
Robert B. Russell
E-mail address or username (if username, please confirm email address in Special:Preferences)
Country of origin
Affiliation, if any (organization, company etc.)
Cell Networks, University of Heidelberg
Personal homepage or blog
Abstract (please use no less than 300 words to describe your proposal)

Indicators that rank countries according socio-economic measurements are important tools for regional development and political reform. Those currently in widespread use are criticized for a lack of reproducibility or the inability to compare values over time, necessitating simple, fast and systematic measures. Here, we applied the ‘guilt by association’ principle often used in biological networks to the information network within the online encyclopedia Wikipedia to create an indicator quantifying the degree to which pages linked to a country are disputed by contributors in terms of neutrality. The indicator correlates with metrics of governance, political or economic stability about as well as they correlate with each other, and though faster and simpler, it is remarkably stable over time despite constant changes in the underlying disputes. For some countries, changes over a 36 month period appear to correlate with world events related to conflicts or economic problems.

Track (People and Community/Knowledge and Collaboration/Infrastructure)

People and Community

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Slides or further information (optional)

World heat map showing country dispute values (red = most disputed)

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  1. Millosh 14:22, 20 April 2011 (UTC)[reply]
  2. Vibhijain 16:41, 7 May 2011 (UTC)[reply]
  3. DrorK 16:30, 24 May 2011 (UTC)[reply]
  4. Amir E. Aharoni