Units

What are units?

Units are official state or state-sanctioned organizations responsible for the internal or external security for a country. They include police, army, navy, air force and other security forces, as well as those civilian institutions linked to security forces through the chain of command or other linkages. Units refer to any part of the hierarchy of a security force, ranging from a national defense ministry to a police post in a small town. Units can also be groupings of other units, including joint operations, task forces or peacekeeping missions.

Documented in this section of the handbook are field describing the following dimensions of units:

  • their existence and identity;
  • their position in the hierarchy of a security force;
  • locations of physical infrastructure like posts, bases and camps;
  • their areas of operations; and,
  • memberships in joint operations or international peacekeeping missions.

A spreadsheet containing all the fields used by Security Force Monitor can be found in the section called Sample data entry sheets.

Unit: Unique Identifier

Description

A unique 32 character code assigned to each unit in the dataset.

Type of field

Text and numbers

Example of use

a407be6a-28e6-4237-b4e9-307f27b1202e

Spreadsheet column name

unit:id:admin

Shortcode

u_id_a

Sources

No

Confidence

No

Guidance on use

This value is a Universally Unique Indentifier (UUID) generated using a computer program. UUIDs can be created easily using either installable or online tools, for example:

  • Linux and OSX users: uuidgen command line tool.
  • On the web: UUID Generator.

The field is administrative, providing a reliable way to differentiate between different units. In earlier versions, Security Force Monitor used unit:name to do this role but this provided inefficient as the dataset grew.

When a new unit is created directly in WhoWasInCommand, the platform automatically creates a UUID for that unit and stores it in this field. If a new unit is created in a spreadsheet, the Staff Researcher must generate a unique identifying number for that unit and copy it into the field unit:id:admin for every row associated with that specific unit. This manual, copy-and-paste step is a potential source of error and the Staff Researcher must be careful not to re-use a UUID.

Bulk updates made to WhoWasInCommand.com by spreadsheet import are based on the values in this field. For example, changes made in the row a407be6a-28e6-4237-b4e9-307f27b1202e in the spreadsheet will be applied to the unit with that UUID in WhoWasInCommand.

Unit: Research Owner

Description

Initials of Staff Reseacher who first created the unit.

Type of field

Text

Example of use

TL, TW, MM

Spreadsheet column name

unit:owner:admin

Shortcode

u_own_a

Sources

No

Confidence

No

Guidance on use

This field is administrative and only used where data are created using a spreadsheets. It is a simple measure to help researchers keep track of records they have created. These data are not imported into WhoWasInCommand. Instead, WhoWasInCommand keeps a record of the changes (edits, new records, deletions) by the name of the system user who made them.

Unit: Research Status

Description

The place of a row of data in the research workflow.

Type of field

Number range from 0 to 3

Example of use

1

Spreadsheet column name

unit:status:admin

Shortcode

u_sta_a

Sources

No

Confidence

No

Guidance on use

This administrative field is only used in spreadsheets. Staff Researchers use this field to indicate where a row of data stands in the research workflow between the first cut of a row of data, review by other researchers, and final readiness for publication. Values in this field are taken from the below controlled list:

  • 0: First commit. This row of data has just been added and needs review.
  • 1: Fixes needed. A reviewer has made comments that need to be addressed, which will be recorded in the unit:comment:admin field.
  • 2: Fixes made. The owner of this data has addressed the reviewer’s comments.
  • 3: Clean. A final check has been made by a reviewer, and this row of data can be published.

Data created and managed in WhoWasInCommand does not use this mechanism. At the time of writing, a simple review system is being implemeneted in WhoWasInCommand.

Unit: Research Comments

Description

Observations specific to the process of reviewing data in this row, including fixes, refinements and other suggestions.

Type of field

Text

Example of use

Parent unit missing, Geography needs attention, Possible duplicate - merge?

Spreadsheet column name

unit:comments:admin

Shortcode

u_com_a

Sources

No

Confidence

No

Guidance on use

This is an adminstrative field specific to data created in spreadsheets. Staff Researchers use it to pass on feedback about the data in the row. This may included changes needs to specific fields, references to sources that the owner of the row might look at, and other observations that can improve the quality of the data. Data in this field are not intended for publication.

Unit: Name

Description

Name of the unit.

Type of field

Text and numbers

Example of use

3 Armoured Division, 3 Compañía de Infantería No Encuadrada, 7 Military Operations Command

Spreadsheet column name

unit:name

Shortcode

u_n

Sources

Yes (unit:name:source, u_n_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:name:confidence, u_n_c)

Guidance on use

As different sources will spell a unit’s name in different ways the Security Force Monitor works to create a single canonical version of a unit’s name based on sources and standardized to match the overall structure of and reporting about the security forces:

Example: Police Divisions are a class of police units in Nigeria. There are over 1000 units of this type nationwide. However, each individual Police Division may not have a citation for their formal name such as Lagos Police Division, but only have a citation (or numerous citations) for the less formal Lagos Division. The Monitor would list the name of the unit as Lagos Police Division with a note about the methodology behind that choice. The less formal Lagos Division name would be entered in the Unit: Aliases field (documented below).

Example: Army units of a country may follow a naming convention of a number and then name of unit: e.g. 3 Battalion or 25 Brigade. There may be a unit of which we only have citations for a variation on that: e.g. Fourth Battalion. In this case, the Monitor would list the name of the unit as 4 Battalion with a note about the methodology behind that choice. The Fourth Battalion name variant would be entered in the Aliases or alternative spellings field

Standardizations don’t have specific sources, so we have created a specific source to use in these cases. Where a value in Unit: Name has been standardized, a source with the following title will be associated with it: “Name standardized in accordance with Security Force Monitor research”.

Additionally, wherever possible, we will choose the most complete and complex version of a unit’s name that can be evidenced by a source:

Example: 3 Armoured Division would be the entry, rather than the more informal 3 Division (which may have more citations).

The Monitor does not use ordinal indicators like 1st or 3rd in the name of an Unit. Instead these will be listed in the Unit: Other Names field (see below).

The Monitor uses the name in the official (local) language of the country where appropriate and/or possible.

Example: A unit in the Mexican Army would be called by its name in Spanish (10 Regimiento de Caballería Motorizado), rather than the English translation ( 10 Motorized Cavalry Regiment).

In an effort to standardize names across all countries, the Monitor generally uses Arabic numerals in the Unit: Name field. Where warranted by sources the Monitor will use Roman numerals like V or XI instead of 5 or 11 respectively.

In cases where multiple units have the same name the Monitor will distinguish them by adding unique identifying text based on the unit’s site or parent.

Example: There are multiple “Central Police Station” formations across Nigeria, some based in the same state. To better distinguish these are separate, distinct units the Monitor added information on where the units were located to the name field for instance Central Police Station (Awka, Anambra State).In Myanmar there have been different units through time both the name Central Regional Military Command. To distinguish them the Monitor added information on when the unit came into existence to the name: Central Regional Military Command (post 199).

Unit: Other Names

Description

Other names for a unit, including aliases, alternative spellings and abbreviations.

Type of field

Text and numbers

Example of use

If 3 Armoured Division is used as the canonical Unit: Name of a unit, entries in the Unit: Other Names field may include 3 Div and Three Division.

Spreadsheet column name

unit:other_names

Shortcode

u_on

Sources

Yes (unit:other_names:source, u_on_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:other_names:confidence, u_on_c)

Guidance on use

Different sources will spell a unit’s name in different ways. We choose and record a canonical version of a unit’s name in the Unit: Name field. All other spellings that we have found are treated as aliases and stored in this field.

Although we do not use ordinal indicators like 2nd or 10/o in the canonical name we choose for a unit, where a source uses an Ordinal we record it as an alias.

Example: We find a version of the unit name 3 Armoured Division that has an Ordinal indicator: 10/o. Regimiento de Caballería Motorizado. We would record this in the Unit: Other Names field.

Unit: Country

Description

ISO 3166 two letter code for the country in which a unit originates.

Type of field

Two letter country code

Example of use

mx, ug, ng

Spreadsheet column name

unit:country

Shortcode

u_c

Sources

Yes (unit:country:sources, u_c_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:country:confidence, u_c_c)

Guidance on use

The Unit: Country field identifies the country this unit comes from. All entries in this field are two letter country codes taken from ISO 3166.

For example, a unit based in Nigeria would have the code ng and a unit based in Brazil would have the code br

Unit: Classification

Description

Branch of the security services that the unit a part of or general descriptor for the unit.

Type of field

Text and numbers

Example of use

Army, Ejército, Police, Military, Military Police, Joint Operation

Spreadsheet column name

unit:classification

Shortcode

u_cl

Sources

Yes (unit:classification:sources, u_cl_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:classification:confidence, u_cl_c)

Guidance on use

We use classifications to describe the basic nature of a specific unit and to assist investigations of potential linkages between reports of human rights abuses and the Security Force Monitor’s dataset. As alleged perpetrators are usually identified in general terms of “soldiers” and “police” this field is important as a first step to understand potential linkages between units, persons and incidents. Unit: Classification values are useful supplements to Unit: Related Unit and Unit: Membership data we use to connect different units together.

The Unit: Classification field will contain a mix of standard terms and country-specific terms used to describe security force branches. In choosing terms to include in the Unit: Classification field we try to include terms that are used by country experts as well as those that are commons terms. We also try to be economical and create as few, distinct terms as possible.

Example: a standard term we would apply to army units is Army. The equivalent in Mexico would be Ejécito. We would capture both terms in the Unit: Classification field.

Units may have more than one classification, usually this will be when a unit can have “generic” and “specific” classifications.

Example: Units which are part of the army of a country may be coded as having a classification of Army as well as a classification of Military, whereas units which are part of the navy of a country would have classifications of of Navy and Military. For both the army and navy unit their respective classifications are correct, the army and the navy are part of the military. Critically, this enables the Monitor or users of the Monitor’s data to properly analyze allegations against “soldiers” and “members of the army” in the country. In the case of “soldiers” this analysis should include every unit with the classification of Military while if there is greater specificity of “members of the army” would mean excluding any unit with the classification of Navy and focusing only on those units with a classification of Army.

Unit: First Cited Date

Description

The earliest date that a source shows a unit exists, either through direct reference in the source or by the date of its publication.

Type of field

Date (YYYY-MM-DD), fuzzy

Example of use

2012, 2012-11, 2012-11-23

Spreadsheet column name

unit:first_cited_date

Shortcode

u_fcd

Sources

Yes (unit:first_cited_date:source, u_fcd_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:first_cited_date:confidence, u_fcd_c)

Guidance on use

Along with the fields Unit: First Cited Date is also Unit's Start Date, Unit: Last Cited Date and Unit: Last Cited Date is Open-Ended the field Unit: First Cited Date provides data about the time period we can evidence a unit has existed.

The Unit: First Cited Date field contains a date that is either:

  • The earliest date found in a source that specifically references a unit; or,

  • The earliest date of publication of sources that make reference to a unit.

    For example, if three sources published on 1 January 2012, 1 February 2012 and 1 March 2012 all refer to 1 Motorized Brigade, we will use 1 January 2012 as the Unit: First Cited Date. If the source published on 1 March 2012 refers to activity of 1 Motorized Brigade that occurred on 30 June 2011, we will use 30 June 2011 as the Unit: First Cited Date.

In keeping with all date fields we include in this dataset, where our research can only find a year or a year and a month, this can be included in Unit: First Cited Date .

This field is clarified by the field Unit: First Cited Date is also Unit's Start Date which indicates whether the date included here is the actual date on which a unit was founded.

Unit: First Cited Date is also Unit’s Start Date

Description

Indicates whether the value in Unit: First Cited Date is the actual date a unit was founded.

Type of field

Boolean

Example of use

Y, N

Spreadsheet column name

unit:first_cited_date_start

Shortcode

u_fcds

Sources

Yes. Inherits from Unit: First Cited Date (unit:first_cited_date:source, u_fcd_s).

Confidence

Yes. Inherits from Unit:First Cited Date (unit:first_cited_date:confidence, u_fcd_c).

Guidance on use

This is a clarifying field for Unit: First Cited Date:

  • Y: used where a source references a unit and specifies the date that unit was created
  • N: used in all other cases, indicating that the date is not a start date but the date of first citation.

Unit: Last Cited Date

Description

The most recent date for sourcing the unit’s existence, either through direct reference in the source or by the date of its publication.

Type of field

Date (YYYY-MM-DD), fuzzy

Example of use

2013, 2013-12, 2013-12-28

Spreadsheet column name

unit:last_cited_date

Shortcode

u_lcd

Sources

Yes (unit:last_cited_date:sources, u_lcd_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:last_cited_date:confidence, u_lcd_c)

Guidance on use

Along with the fields Unit: First Cited Date, Unit: First Cited Date is also Unit's Start Date and Unit: Last Cited Date is Open-Ended the field Unit: Last Cited Date provides data on the time period we can say a unit has existed.

The Unit: Last Cited Date field contains a date that is either:

  • The latest date found in a source that specifically references a unit; or,

  • The latest date of publication of sources that make reference to a unit.

    For example, if three sources published on 1 January 2012, 1 February 2012 and 1 March 2012 all refer to 1 Motorized Brigade, we will use 1 March 2012 as the Unit: Last Cited Date. If the source published on 1 March 2012 refers to activity of 1 Motorized Brigade that occurred on 15 February 2012, we will use 15 February 2012 as the value in Unit: Last Cited Date.

In keeping with all date fields we include in this dataset, where our research can only find a year or a year and a month, this can be included in Unit: Last Cited Date.

This field is clarified by Unit: Open-ended?, which indicates whether the date in Unit: Date last cited is the date a unit was disbanded.

Unit: Last Cited Date is Open-Ended

Description

Indicates whether the value in Unit: Last Cited Date the actual date on which a unit was disbanded or not.

Type of field

Single choice

Example of use

Y, N, E

Spreadsheet column name

unit:last_cited_date_open

Shortcode

u_lcdo

Sources

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Last Cited Date (unit:last_cited_date:source, u_lcd_s)

Confidence

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Last Cited Date (unit:last_cited_date:confidence, u_lcd_c)

Guidance on use

We use this field to clarify the meaning of the date entered in Unit: Last Cited Date. Depending on information availalbe from sources, one of the below values should be chosen:

  • E indicates the exact date this unit was disbanded, or ceases to exist.
  • Y indicates that we assume this unit continues to exist.
  • N indicates we do not assume that this unit continues to exist, but we do not have an exact end date.

Unit: Type of Relationship

Description

A field specific to WhoWasInCommand that indicates whether a unit specified in Unit: Related Unit is an immediate subordinate (child) or superior (parent) unit.

Type of field

Boolean

Example of use

Parent, Child

Spreadheet column name

Specific to WhoWasInCommand and not used in spreadsheets.

Shortcode

None

Sources

No

Confidence

No

Guidance on use

The field Unit: Related Unit always contains data about then immediate superior unit. In WhoWasInCommand, this value can be specified from both sides of the relationship. In the example above, this means that the record for 7 Division Garrison could be edited to add 112 Task Force Battalion as a subordinate or child unit. However, this would mean that the Unit: Related Unit field for 112 Task Froce Battalion would then be populated with 7 Division Garrison. In WhoWasInCommand, a clarifying field called Unit: Type of Relationship enables this ability. It simply chooses which record should be used to define the relationship; no additional data is created when this field is used.

Unit: Unit Relationship Start Date

Description

Indicates whether the value in Unit: Related Units First Cited Date is the actual date on which a unit became the parent of another, or the earliest date a source has referred to the relationship

Type of field

Boolean (Yes, No)

Example of use

Y, N

Spreadsheet column name

unit:related_unit_first_cited_date_start

Shortcode

u_rufcds

Sources

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Related Unit First Cited Date (unit:related_unit_first_cited_date:source, u_rufcd_s)

Confidence

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Related Unit First Cited Date (unit:related_unit_first_cited_date:confidence, u_rufcd_c)

Guidance on use

This is a clarifying field for Unit: Related Unit First Cited Date. Where a source references the parent relationship and specifies the date that the relationship began we will enter Y . In all other cases we will enter a value of N to indicate that the date is not a start date, but the date of first citation.

Unit: Base Name

Description

A base is a distinctively named building or complex - like a barracks or camp - where the unit is located.

Type of field

Text and numbers

Example of use

Leopard Base, Giwa Barracks, Bonny Camp

Spreadsheet column name

unit:base_name`

Shortcode

u_bn

Sources

Yes (unit:base_name:source, u_b_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:base_name:confidence, u_b_c)

Guidance on use

The Unit: Base Name field adds detail about a site. This field is used to record data about units that are located in a distinctively-named building or complex.

For example, 3 Battalion in Nigeria is cited as being based in the Lubanga Barracks in Enugu, Enugu State, Nigeria.

This field should not be used for anything that matches the name or alias of a unit. For example, North Sector Police Station should not be put in this field if the name of the unit is North Sector Police Station.

Unit: Site, Exact Location (Longitude or Gazetteer Name)

Description

The longitude or gazetteer name of the most precise location of a site associated with a unit.

Type of field

First value of a latitude/longitude pair (using EPSG:3857), or a name provided by a gazetteer.

Example of use

  • If used to record an OSM Node Name: Masr Al-Gedida
  • If used to record a latitude: 31.3280332

Spreadsheet column name

unit:site_exact_location_name_longitude

Shortcode

u_selnlon

Sources

Yes (unit:site_exact_location:source, u_sel_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:site_exact_location:confidence, u_sel_c)

Guidance on use

We identify sites with a number of different levels of geographical precision.

Unit: Site, Exact Location (Longitude or Gazetteer Name) is the first of a pair of values with Unit: Site, Exact Location (Latitude or Gazetteer Identity Number). This pair of fields is used to record the most precise location of a site associated with a unit, whether this is a location name and ID provided by a gazetteer (such as an object (node, way or relation) in OpenStreetMap) or a pair of geographical coordinates.

  • Where an object for the exact site is present in the gazetteer we will enter its name in this field.
  • Where no object exists in the gazetteer for the exact site a pair of coordinates will be used, the longitude value is recorded in this field.

Unit: Site, Exact Location (Latitude or Gazetteer Identity Number)

Description

The latitude or gazetteer identity number of the most precise location of a site associated with a unit.

Type of field

Second value of a longitude/latitude pair (using EPSG:3857), or an identity/reference number provided by a gazetteer.

Example of use

  • If used to record an OSM object ID number: 452377264
  • If used to record a Longitude: 30.09716

Spreadsheet column name

unit:site_exact_location_id_latitude

Shortcode

u_selidlat

Sources

Yes (unit:site_exact_location:source, u_sel_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:site_exact_location:confidence, u_sel_c)

Guidance on use

We identify sites with a number of different levels of geographical precision.

Unit: Site, Exact Location (Latitude or Gazetteer Identity Number) is the second of a pair of values with Unit: Site, Exact Location (Longitude or Gazetteer Name). This pair of fields is used to record the most precise location of a site associated with a unit, whether this is a location name and ID provided by a gazetteer (such as an object (node, way or relation) in OpenStreetMap) or a pair of geographical coordinates.

  • Where an object for the exact site is present in the gazetteer we will enter its identity/reference number in this field.
  • Where no object exists in the gazetteer for the exact site a pair of coordinates will be used, the latitude value is recorded in this field.

Unit: Site, Nearest Settlement (Name)

Description

The city, town or village in which a unit site is based.

Type of field

First in a pair of values with Unit: Site, Settlement (ID), gazetteer settlement Name (text)

Example of use

Tampico, Francisco Escarcega, Abu al Matamir

Spreadsheet column name

unit:site_nearest_settlement_name

Shortcode

u_nsn

Sources

Yes (unit:site_neartest_settlement_name:source, u_nsn_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:site_neartest_settlement_name:confidence, u_nsn_c)

Guidance on use

We identify sites with a number of different levels of geographical precision. In Site: Settlement (Name) we record the settlement name included in the gazetteer in use for the dataset. For example, if Open Street Map is the gazetter, then we will record the name of the OSM object (node, way or relation) that identifies a settlement in which there is a unit site. It could be a city, town or village or other gazetteer object that denotes a settlement.

Unit: Site, Nearest Settlement (ID)

Description

The city, town or village in which a unit site is based.

Type of field

Second in a pair of values with Unit: Site, Settlement (Name), gazetteer ID (number)

Example of use

273584290,286989920,769127625

Spreadsheet column name

unit:site_nearest_settlement_id

Shortcode

u_nsid

Sources

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Site, Nearest Settlement (Name) (unit:site_neartest_settlement_name:source, u_nsn_s)

Confidence

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Site, Nearest Settlement (Name) (unit:site_neartest_settlement_name:confidence, u_nsn_c)

Guidance on use

We identify sites with a number of different levels of geographical precision. In Unit: Site, Nearest Settlement (ID) field we record the identity number of the location as provided by the gazetteer in use for the dataset. For example, if Open Steet Map is the gazetteer, then we will record the ID number of the OSM object (node, way or relation) that identifies a settlement in which there is a unit site. It could be a city, town or village or other gazetteer object that denotes a settlement.

Unit: Site, First-level Administrative Area (Name)

Description

The name of the largest, generally used sub-national administrative area of a country, as defined by the gazetteer.

Type of field

First in a pair of values, gazetteer name (text)

Example of use

Michoacán, Borno

Spreadsheet column name

unit:site_first_admin_area_name

Shortcode

u_sfaan

Sources

Yes (unit:site_first_admin_area_name:source, u_sfaan_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:site_first_admin_area_name:confidence, u_sfaan_c)

Guidance on use

We identify sites with a number of different levels of geographical precision. In Unit: Site, First-level Administrative Area (Name) we record the text name of highest level subnational boundary for the country in which the site is located, as defined in the gazetteer in use for the dataset. For example, if Open Steet Map is the gazetteer, administrative levels can be found here. Generally, adminstrative areas are relations in the OSM dataset, and are tagged as administrative levels.

Example: Mexico has both municipios (administrative level 6 in OSM) and states (administrative level 4). For a site based in Mexico, we would record in Unit: Site, First-level Administrative Area (Name) the name of the administrative level 4 object or the state.

Unit: Site, First-level Administrative Area (ID)

Description

The identity number of the largest, generally used sub-national administrative area of a country, as defined by the gazetteer.

Type of field

Second in a pair of values, gazetteer object ID (number

Example of use

2340636

Spreadsheet column name

unit:site_first_admin_area_id

Shortcode

u_sfaaid

Sources

Yes. Inherits from Unit: First-level Administrative Area (Name) (unit:site_first_admin_area_name:source, u_sfaan_s)

Confidence

Yes. Inherits from Unit: First-level Administrative Area (Name) (unit:site_first_admin_area_name:confidence, u_sfaan_c)

Guidance on use

We identify sites with a number of different levels of geographical precision. In Unit: Site, First-level Administrative Area (ID) we record the text name of highest level subnational boundary for the country in which the site is located, as defined in the gazetteer in use for the dataset. For example, if Open Steet Map is the gazetteer, administrative levels can be found here. Generally, adminstrative areas are relations in the OSM dataset, and are tagged as administrative levels.

Example: Mexico has both municipios (administrative level 6 in OSM) and states (administrative level 4). For a site based in Mexico, we would record in Unit: First-level Administrative Area (ID number) the OSM object ID number of the administrative level 4 object or the state.

Unit: Site Country

Description

ISO 3166 two letter code for the country in which a unit site is located.

Type of field

Two letter country code

Example of use

mx, ug, ng

Spreadsheet column name

unit:site_country

Shortcodes

u_sc

Sources

Yes (unit:site_country:source, u_sc_s). These are not in use in spreadsheets.

Confidence

Yes (unit:site_country:confidence, u_sc_c). These are not in use in spreadsheets.

Guidance on use

We identify sites with a number of different levels of geographical precision. The Unit: Site Country field identifies the country in which a unit site is located. All entries in this field are two letter country codes taken from ISO 3166 which can be searched here.

For example, a unit site located in Nigeria would have the code ng and a unit site located in Brazil would have the code br.

Unit: Site, First Cited Date

Description

This field captures the earliest citation date for the location of a site, either through direct reference in the source or by the date of its publication.

Type of field

Date (YYYY-MM-DD), fuzzy

Example of use

2012, 2012-11, 2012-11-23

Spreadsheet column name

unit:site_first_cited_date

Shortcode

u_sfcd

Sources

Yes (unit:site_first_cited_date:source, u_sfcd_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:site_first_cited_date:confidence, u_sfcd_c)

Guidance on use

Along with the fields Unit: Site was founded on First Cited Date, Unit: Site, Last Cited Date and Unit: Site, Last Cited Date is Open-Ended the field Unit: Site, First Cited Date provides data on the time period for a site’s location.

The Unit: Site, First Cited Date field contains a date that is either:

  • The earliest date found in any source that references the values contained in the pairs of fields that record Unit: Site, Nearest Settlement, or failing that, Unit: Site, First-level Administrative Area.
  • The earliest date of publication of any source that references the values contained in the pairs of fields that record Unit: Site, Nearest Settlement, or failing that, Unit: Site, First-level Administrative area.

In keeping with all date fields we include in this dataset, where our research can only find a year or a year and a month, this can be included in Unit: Site, First Cited Date.

This field is clarified by the field Unit: Site was Founded on First Cited Date which indicates whether the date included here is the actual date on which a unit site was founded.

Unit: Site was Founded on First Cited Date

Description

Indicates whether or not the value in Unit: Site, First Cited Date the actual date on which a unit site was founded

Type of field

Boolean (Yes, No)

Example of use

Y, N

Spreadsheet column name

unit:site_first_cited_date_founding

Shortcode

u_sfcdf

Sources

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Site, First Cited Date (unit:site_first_cited_date:source, u_sfcd_s)

Confidence

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Site, First Cited Date (unit:site_first_cited_date:confidence, u_sfcd_c)

Guidance on use

This is a clarifying field for Unit: Site, First Cited Date. There are two options for use in this field:

  • Y: Where a source references a unit site and specifies the date that unit site was founded.
  • N: In all other cases, indicate that the date is not a start date, but the date of first citation.

Unit: Site, Last Cited Date

Description

This field is for the latest citation for the location of a site, either through direct reference in the source or by the date of its publication.

Type of field

Date (YYYY-MM-DD), fuzzy

Example of use

2012, 2012-11, 2012-11-23

Spreadsheet column name

unit:site_last_cited_date

Shortcode

u_slcd

Sources

Yes (unit:site_last_cited_date:source, u_slcd_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:site_last_cited_date:confidence, u_slcd_c)

Guidance on use

Along with the fields Unit: Site, First Cited Date, Unit: Site was founded on First Cited Date and Unit: Site, Last Cited Date is Open-Ended the field Unit: Site, Last Cited Date provides data on the time period for a site’s location.

The Unit: Site, Last Cited Date field contains a date that is either:

  • The latest date found in any source that references the values contained in the pairs of fields that record Unit: Site, Nearest Settlement, or failing that, Unit: Site, First-level Administrative area.
  • The latest date of publication of any source that references the values contained in the pairs of fields that record Unit: Site, Nearest Settlement, or failing that, Unit: Site, First-level Administrative area.

In keeping with all date fields we include in this dataset, where our research can only find a year or a year and a month, this can be included in Unit: Site, Last Cited Date.

This field is clarified by the field Unit: Site, Last Cited Date is Open-Ended which indicates whether the date included here is the actual date on which a unit was no longer located at this site.

Unit: Site, Last Cited Date is Open-Ended

Description

Indicates whether the value in Unit: Site, Last Cited Date is the actual date on which a unit site was disbanded, the latest date a source has referred to a unit site, and whether can we assume this unit site continues to exist.

Type of field

Single choice (Y, N, E)

Example of use

Y, N, E

Spreadsheet column name

unit:site_open

Shortcode

u_so

Sources

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Site, Last Cited Date (unit:site_last_cited_date:source, u_slcd_s)

Confidence

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Site, Last Cited Date (unit:site_last_cited_date:confidence, u_slcd_c)

Guidance on use

We use this field to clarify the meaning of the date entered in Unit: Site, Last Cited Date. In entering a value for this field we use a variety of factors including: the history of basing for the unit, the overall structure and nature of the security forces, and the frequency of movement of similar units.

The values that can be entered in this field are restricted to the below:

  • E: indicates the exact date this unit site was disbanded, or ceases to exist.
  • Y: indicates that we assume this unit site continues to exist.
  • N: indicates we do not assume that this unit site continues to exist, but we do not have an exact end date.

Unit: Area of Operations (Name)

Description

A geographical area in which a unit exercises jurisdiction or has operated in any manner.

Type of field

First in a pair of fields with Unit: Area of Operations (ID), gazetteer object name (text)

Example of use

Baja California Sur, Kafr el-Sheikh Governorate

Spreadsheet column name

unit:area_ops_name

Shortcode

u_an

Sources

Yes (unit:area_ops_name:source, u_an_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:area_ops_name:confidence, u_an_c)

Guidance on use

This pair of fields document multiple and concurrent areas of operation of a unit. Where Open Street Map is used as the gazetteer for the dataset, the value entered in this field is the OSM name for the lowest-level formal geographical area that best describes where a unit has operated in some manner. In most cases, the OSM object type used in this field will be a relation.

Unit: Area of Operations (ID)

Description

A geographical area in which a unit exercises jurisdiction or has operated in any manner.

Type of field

Second in a pair of fields with Unit: Area of Operations (Name), gazetteer reference or ID number (number)

Example of use

2589611, 4103405

Spreadsheet column name

unit:area_ops_id

Shortcode

u_aid

Sources

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Area of Operations (Name) (unit:area_ops_name:source, u_an_s)

Confidence

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Area of Operations (Name) (unit:area_ops_name:confidence, u_an_c)

Guidance on use

This pair fo fields document multiple and concurrent areas of operation of a unit. If Open Street Map is the gazetteer in use for the dataset, the value entered in this field is the OSM object ID number for the lowest-level formal geographical area that best describes where a unit has operated in some manner. In most cases, the OSM object type used in this field will be a relation.

Unit: Country of Area of Operations

Description

The country in which an Area of Operation is located.

Type of field

Two letter country code

Example of use

mx, ug, ng

Spreadsheet column name

unit:area_ops_country

Shortcode

u_ac

Sources

Yes (unit:area_ops_country:source, u_ac_s), though these are not in use in spreadheets.

Confidence

Yes (unit:area_ops_country:confidence, u_ac_c), though these are not in use in spreadsheets.

Guidance on use

We identify Area of Operations with two different levels of geographical precision

The Area of Operations: Country field identifies the country in which a unit has operated in some manner. All entries in this field are two letter country codes taken from ISO 3166, which can be searched here.

Unit: Area of Operations, First Cited Date

Description

This field is for the earliest citation for a unit’s Area of Operations, either through direct reference in the source or by the date of its publication.

Type of field

Date (YYYY-MM-DD), fuzzy

Example of use

2012, 2012-11, 2012-11-23

Spreadsheet column name

unit:area_ops_first_cited_date

Shortcode

u_aofcd

Sources

Yes (unit:area_ops_first_cited_date:source, u_aofcd_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:area_ops_first_cited_date:confidence, u_aofcd_c)

Guidance on use

Along with the fields Unit: Area of Operations First Cited Date is Start Date, Unit: Area of Operations Last Cited Date and Unit: Site, Last Cited Date is Open-Ended the field Unit: Area of Operations, First Cited Date provides data on the time period for which can specify a unit’s Area of operations.

The Unit: Area of Operations, First Cited Date field contains a date that is either:

  • The earliest date found in any source that references the values contained in the pairs of fields that record Area of Operations.
  • The earliest date of publication for any source that references the values contained in the pairs of fields that record Area of Operations.

In keeping with all date fields we include in this dataset, where our research can only find a year or a year and a month, this can be included in Unit: Area of Operations, First Cited.

This field is clarified by the field Unit: Area of Operations First Cited Date is Start Date which indicates whether the date included here is the actual date on which an Area of Operations started.

Unit: Area of Operations First Cited Date is Start Date

Description

Indicates whether or not the value in Unit: Area of Operations, First Cited Date is the actual date on which a unit’s Area of Operations started, or the earliest date a source has referred to a unit’s Area of Operations.

Type of field

Boolean

Example of use

Y, N

Spreadsheet column name

unit:area_ops_first_cited_date_start

Shortcode

u_aofcds

Sources

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Area of Operations First Cited Date (unit:area_ops_first_cited_date:source, u_aofcd_s)

Confidence

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Area of Operations First Cited Date (unit:area_ops_first_cited_date:confidence, u_aofcd_c)

Guidance on use

This is a clarifying field for Unit: Area of Operations, Dirst Cited Date. It has two options:

  • Y: Used where a source references a unit and specifies the date that unit Area of Operations was started.
  • N: Used in all other cases to indicate that the date is not a start date, but the date of first citation.

Unit: Area of Operations Last Cited Date

Description

This field is for the date of latest citation for an Area of Operations, either through direct reference in the source or by the date of its publication.

Type of field

Date (YYYY-MM-DD), fuzzy

Example of use

2012, 2012-11, 2012-11-23

Spreadsheet column name

unit:area_ops_last_cited_date

Shortcode

u_aolcd

Sources

Yes (unit:area_ops_last_cited_date:source, u_aolcd_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:area_ops_last_cited_date:confidence, u_aolcd_c)

Guidance on use

Along with the fields Unit: Area of Operations First Cited Date, Unit: Area of Operations First Cited Date is Start Date and Unit: Area of Operations is Open-Ended the field Unit: Area of Operations Last Cited Date provides data on the time period for which can specify an Area of Operations location.

The Unit: Area of Operations Last Cited Date field contains a date that is either:

  • The latest date found in any source that references the values contained in the pairs of fields that record Area of Operations.
  • The latest date of publication for any source that references the values contained in the pairs of fields that record Area of Operations. . In keeping with all date fields we include in this dataset, where our research can only find a year or a year and a month, this can be included in Unit: Area of Operations Last Cited Date.

This field is clarified by the field Site: Open-ended? which indicates whether the date included here is the actual date on which a unit site was ended, or whether we have reason to assume its continued existence beyond that date.

Unit: Area of Operations is Open-Ended

Description

Indicates whether the value in Unit: Area of Operations Last Cited Date is the actual date on which a unit ended operations in the specified area, the latest date a source has referred to this Area of Operations, and whether can we assume a unit will continue to operate in an area beyond the date of last citation.

Type of field

Single choice from selection

Example of use

Y, N, E

Spreadsheet column name

unit:area_ops_open

Shortcode

u_aoo

Sources

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Area of Operations Last Cited Date (unit:area_ops_last_cited_date:source, u_aolcd_s)

Confidence

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Area of Operations Last Cited Date (unit:area_ops_last_cited_date:confidence, u_aolcd_c)

Guidance on use

We use this field to clarify the meaning of the date entered in Unit: Area of Operations Last Cited Date. In entering a value for this field we use a variety of factors to assess whether a unit continues to operation in any manner in this area beyond the date of the last citation. These include: the history of operations of the unit, the overall structure and nature of the security forces, and the frequency of movement of similar units.

For Example, the New York State police would likely maintain an area of operation over all of New York State even if the last citation available to us was from 2015.

The values that can be entered in this field are restricted to the below:

  • E: indicates the exact date a unit stops operating in the specified area.
  • Y: indicates that we assume this unit continues to operation in the specified area.
  • N: indicates we do not assume that this unit will continue to operate in the specified area, but we do not have an exact end date for this.

Unit: Membership

Description

Internal/national joint operations, international peacekeeping operations, or other multi-unit efforts that this unit is a part of.

Type of field

Text and numbers

Example of use

Operación Conjunta Chihuahua, Operation BOYONA

Spreadsheet column name

unit:membership_name

Shortcode

u_m

Sources

Yes (unit:membership_name:source, u_m_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:membership_name:confidence, u_m_c)

Guidance on use

This field indicates whether a unit has had any memberships or attachments to internal/national joint operations, international peacekeeping operations, or other multi-unit efforts. Generally this means one of two things:

  1. Multiple units operate as part of an “operation” focused on a specific mission.

  2. Multiple units “lend” or otherwise deploy personnel who operate under the command of a force composition like a “Joint Task Force” or “Operation”, which usually has a commander of its own.

    Example: soldiers from 1 Division are deployed to the northeast of Nigeria to operate under Operation BOYANA. 1 Division has a commander, but the soldiers as part of Operation BOYANA likely report to and take orders from the commander of Operation BOYANA. When the soldiers are done with their rotation, after several months, they return to their “home unit” 1 Division. So while Operation BOYANA commands some soldiers who are part of 1 Division it doesn’t technically command all of the soldiers of 1 Division (otherwise it would be the parent unit).

We treat task forces, operations, peacekeeping missions and anything else represented in this field as distinct units which must have their own record in the system.

Unit: Membership First Cited Date

Description

This field is for the date of earliest citation for the location of a membership, either through direct reference in the source or by the date of its publication.

Type of field

Date (YYYY-MM-DD), fuzzy

Example of use

2012, 2012-11, 2012-11-23

Spreadsheet column name

unit:membership_first_cited_date

Shortcode

u_mfcd

Sources

Yes (unit:membership_first_cited_date:source, u_mfcd_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:membership_first_cited_date:confidence, u_mfcd_c)

Guidance on use

Along with the fields Unit: Membership First Cited Date is Start Date, Unit: Membership Last Cited Date and Unit: Membership End-Date the field Unit: Membership First Cited Date provides data on the duration of one unit’s membership in another.

The Unit: Membership First Cited Date field contains a date that is either:

  • The earliest date found in any source that references the values contained in the pairs of fields that record Membership
  • The earliest date of publication of any source that references the values contained in the pairs of fields that record Membership. . In keeping with all date fields we include in this dataset, where our research can only find a year or a year and a month, this can be included in Unit: Membership First Cited Date.

This field is clarified by the field Unit: Membership First Cited Date is Start Date which indicates whether the date included here is the actual date on which a unit membership was founded.

Unit: Membership First Cited Date is Start Date

Description

Indicates whether or not the value in Unit: Membership First Cited Date is the actual date on which a membership was started, or the earliest date a source has referred to a unit Membership.

Type of field

Boolean

Example of use

Y, N

Spreadsheet column name

unit:membership_first_cited_date_start

Shortcode

u_mfcds

Sources

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Membership First Cited Date (unit:membership_first_cited_date:source, u_mfcd_s)

Confidence

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Membership First Cited Date (unit:membership_first_cited_date:confidence, u_mfcd_c)

Guidance on use

This is a clarifying field for Unit: Mmbership First Cited Date:

  • Y: Where a source references a membership and specifies the exact date the relationship was established.
  • N: Used in all other cases to indicate that the date is not a start date, but the date of first citation.

Unit: Membership Last Cited Date

Description

This field is for the latest date of citation of a membership, either through direct reference in the source or by the date of its publication.

Type of field

Date (YYYY-MM-DD), fuzzy

Example of use

2012, 2012-11, 2012-11-23

Spreadsheet column name

unit:membership_last_cited_date

Shortcode

u_mlcd

Sources

Yes (unit:membership_last_cited_date:source, u_mlcd_s)

Confidence

Yes (unit:membership_last_cited_date:confidence, u_mlcd_c)

Guidance on use

Along with the fields Membership: Date first cited, Membership: Start date? and Membership: End-date? the field Membership: Date last cited provides data on duration of a membership.

The Membership: Date last cited field contains a date that is either:

  • The latest date found in any source that references the values contained in the pairs of fields that record Membership; or,
  • The latest date of publication of any source that references the values contained in the pairs of fields that record Membership. . In keeping with all date fields we include in this dataset, where our research can only find a year or a year and a month, this can be included in Membership: Date last cited.

This field is clarified by the field Unit: Membership End-Date which indicates whether the date included here is the actual date on which a unit Membership was terminated.

Unit: Membership End-Date

Description

Indicate whether or not the value in Unit: Membership Last Cited Date the actual date on which the membership ended or the latest date a source has referred to a unital Membership.

Type of field

Boolean

Example of use

Y, N

Spreadsheet column name

unit:membership_last_cited_date_end

Shortcode

u_mclde

Sources

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Membership Last Cited Date (unit:membership_last_cited_date:source, u_mlcd_s)

Confidence

Yes. Inherits from Unit: Membership Last Cited Date (unit:membership_last_cited_date:confidence, u_mlcd_c)

Guidance on use

We use this field to clarify the meaning of the date entered in Unit: Membership Last Cited Date.

The values that can be entered in this field are restricted to the below:

  • Y: indicates that the membership ended on that date.
  • N: indicates that the date is the date of last citation for the membership.

Unit: Notes

Description

Analysis, commentary and notes about the unit that do not fit into the data structure.

Type of field

Text and numbers

Example of use

In March 1990 the previous Central Regional Military Command based in Taungoo was renamed Southern Regional Military Command, the previous Northwestern Regional Military Command based in Mandalay was renamed as the Central Regional Military Command and a new Northwestern Regional Military Command was created in Monywa.

Spreadsheet column name

unit:notes:admin

Shortcode

u_n_a

Sources

No

Confidence

No

Guidance on use

We use this field to record information about the unit that is likely to provide useful context, additional information that does not fit into the data structure, and notes about how decisions were made about which data to include. Any sources used should be referenced directly in the field as a full, archived URL.