Training other countries’ armed forces is a go-to foreign policy tool for the United States and other states. A growing literature explores the effects of military training, but researchers lack detailed data on training activities. To assess the origins and consequences of military training, as well as changing patterns over time, this project provides a new, global dataset of US foreign military training. This article describes the scope of the data along with the variables collected, coding procedures, and spatial and temporal patterns. We demonstrate the added value of the data in their much greater coverage of training activities, showing differences from both existing datasets and aggregate foreign military aid data. Reanalyzing prior research findings linking US foreign military training to the risk of coups d’état in recipient states, we find that this effect is limited to a single US program representing a small fraction of overall US training activities. The data show comprehensively how the United States attempts to influence partner military forces in a wide variety of ways and suggest new avenues of research.
This was originally published on SAGE Publications Ltd: Journal of Peace Research: Table of Contents.