The Global Socio-Political Destabilization Wave of 2011 and the Following Years: A Quantitative Analysis

The Global Socio-Political Destabilization Wave of 2011 and the Following Years:
A Quantitative Analysis

Korotayev A.V.,

Dr. Sci. (Philos.), Dr. Sci. (Hist.), Professor, Head of Centre for Stability and Risk Analysis, HSE University; Senior Research Fellow, RUDN University; Professor of the Faculty of Global Studies, M.V. Lomonosov Moscow State University,

elibrary_id: 72980 | ORCID: 0000-0003-3014-2037 | RESEARCHER_ID: N-1160-2018

Shishkina A.R.,

Master of Political Science, Junior Researcher, Socio-Political Destabilization Risk Monitoring Laboratory, National Research University Higher School of Economics; Junior Researcher, Center for Civilizational and Regional Studies, Institute for African Studies, Russian Academy of Sciences,

elibrary_id: 781188 |

Lukhmanova Z.T.,

Master of Political Science, Junior Researcher, Socio-Political Destabilization Risk Monitoring Laboratory, National Research University Higher School of Economics,

DOI: 10.17976/jpps/2017.06.11

For citation:

Korotayev A.V., Shishkina A.R., Lukhmanova Z.T. The Global Socio-Political Destabilization Wave of 2011 and the Following Years: A Quantitative Analysis. – Polis. Political Studies. 2017. No. 6. P. 150-168. (In Russ.).


This article analyzes global dynamics of all the major indicators of sociopolitical destabilization in 2011-2015. The authors come to the conclusion that after the beginning of the Arab Spring, explosive global growth was observed for the overwhelming majority of indicators of socio-political destabilization – for anti-government demonstrations, riots, general strikes, terrorist acts / guerrilla warfare and purges. It was also observed for the global integral index of socio-political destabilization. On the other hand, no statistically significant growth was observed for assassinations and political crises. On the other hand, for such an important indicator of global socio-political destabilization, as a global number of coups and coup attempts, there was a statistically significant decrease. In 2011, the number of major anti-government demonstrations in the world increased in a particularly dramatic way (11.5 times, that is, more than by an order of magnitude). At the same time, there was a noticeably less intensive (approximately 6-fold) increase in the global number of riots, while the number of major terrorist attacks in this year only doubled. The global number of major anti-government demonstrations in 2012-2013 slightly decreased, while the global intensity of riots continued to grow, coming close to the intensity of anti-government demonstrations. The global number of major terrorist attacks in 2011-2014 grew exponentially, exceeding in 2014 the number of both major anti-government demonstrations and riots. In general, it can be said that the growth of the global number of riots followed the growth of the number of anti-government demonstrations with a certain lag, and the increase in the number of terrorist acts was somewhat lagging relative to both of them. 

global political processes; political globalization; the World System; sociopolitical destabilization; Arab Spring; quantitative analysis; 21st century; demonstrations; riots; strikes; terrorist attacks; coups.


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Content No. 6, 2017

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