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The Charitable Activities of Terrorist Organizations

32 Pages Posted: 13 Dec 2006  

Pierre Ly

University of Puget Sound


Violent groups sometimes invest significant resources in social work, notably in the form of charities and NGOs. The present paper models a terrorist group's charities as a means to advertise its cause in order to raise popular support. The analysis explains how different types of organizations arise in equilibrium, depending on government policies. Then, the interaction between a purely terrorist group and an independent local NGO is examined. It is shown that a purely terrorist group always invests in more attacks than an integrated terrorist-charity organization. Furthermore, the latter may have more NGO activity than a separate local NGO.

Keywords: Terrorism, Non-Government Organizations, Charities

JEL Classification: L31, D74

Suggested Citation

Ly, Pierre, The Charitable Activities of Terrorist Organizations. Public Choice, 2007. Available at SSRN:

Pierre-Emmanuel Ly (Contact Author)

University of Puget Sound ( email )

1500 N Warner St
Tacoma, WA 98416
United States


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