Pushing the Prize Up, a Few Notes on Al-Qaeda's Reward Structure and the Choice of Casualties

Crossroads, Vol. 4, No. 2, pp. 3-6, 2004

4 Pages Posted: 16 May 2005

See all articles by Raul Caruso

Raul Caruso

Catholic University of the Sacred Heart of Milan

Andrea Locatelli

Georgetown University

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Abstract

The article aims at suggesting possible conjectures on Al-Qaeda's logic and structure. Even if the organization's secrecy makes any empirical evidence difficult to find, some insight can be provided by economic theory of contests: in this terms, Al-Qaeda can be acknowledged like an agent rewarding a prize (membership) to its clients (cells and would-be cells). Although this principle makes the organization hardly visible and virtually impenetrable, we contend that in the long term such a logic is non-sustainable.

Keywords: Terrorism, microeconomic theory, prize, contest

JEL Classification: D70, D74

Suggested Citation

Caruso, Raul and Locatelli, Andrea, Pushing the Prize Up, a Few Notes on Al-Qaeda's Reward Structure and the Choice of Casualties. Crossroads, Vol. 4, No. 2, pp. 3-6, 2004, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=702063

Raul Caruso

Catholic University of the Sacred Heart of Milan ( email )

20123 Milano
Italy

Andrea Locatelli (Contact Author)

Georgetown University ( email )

Washington, DC 20057
United States

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