Characteristics of Terrorism
CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute for Economic Research) - Ifo Institute for Economic Research
Dirk T. G. Rübbelke
Basque Centre for Climate Change (BC3); Basque Government - Basque Foundation for Science (IKERBASQUE)
April 1, 2011
Edward Elgar, HANDBOOK ON THE ECONOMICS CONFLICT, 2011
Individual terrorist are frequently behaving seemingly absurd, e.g. by carrying out suicide operations, while activities of the terrorist organizations as a whole often seem to be conducted in a very effective way. These facts caused many researchers to regard the leaders representing the organizations like rational entities, while the followers are supposed to be just obeying and, hence, to be irrational.
In this paper we offer a different approach which postulates rationality of all involved agents. We demonstrate how these agents' behavior could be modeled, while taking into account options of the terrorist leaders to influence their followers. From our model approaches to counter terrorism on both the leadership as well as the follower level can be derived.
Keywords: cognitive dissonance, joint production, Lancastrian characteristics approach, public goods, rationality, suicide attacks, terrorism
JEL Classification: D74, D69Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: September 19, 2011 ; Last revised: October 20, 2011
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