Terrorist Group and Government Interaction: Progress in Cross-National Empirical Research

Terrorist Group and Government Interaction: Progress in Empirical Research

 

by David B. Carter

 

Abstract

 Much progress has been made in the literature on terrorism and political violence over the last decade or more. More specifically, the proliferation of cross-national quantitative empirical work on terrorism has generated numerous advances and insights. While the volume of published work is impressive and the key findings are helpful to both scholars and policy-makers, much remains to be done. This paper argues that future work in this area can be improved with progress in several key areas. Interaction between a violent group and the government it targets is central to much of our theory. However, the theoretical implications of this interaction are not fully exploited with current data and prominent methods of analyzing it. Suggestions are provided that are intended to aid future researchers in addressing this point and in exploiting synergies between cross-national quantitative work and qualitative case study work.

 

Introduction

The political science literature on terrorism and political violence has greatly proliferated in the last decade. Building off of seminal work by Schmid,[1] Eubank and Weinberg,[2] Enders and Sandler[3] and others, the quantitative empirical literature in particular has taken off. This proliferation of large-N quantitative empirical work on terrorism has produced a number of important and useful findings. For instance, we now have a better understanding of the relationship between regime type and terrorism. In fact, the literature on terrorism and regime type has arguably developed in ways that are analogous to the long-established quantitative literature on inter-state disputes. As in the literature on inter-state disputes, many of the key findings and arguments in the cross-national quantitative terrorism literature rely theoretically on strategic interaction. In the terrorism literature this interaction is most often between a violent group and the government. The argument in this paper suggests that scholars doing cross-national empirical work would benefit from making the analysis of group-government interaction more explicit both theoretically and empirically. The main points in the article are illustrated with a focus on developments in the burgeoning literature on regime type and terrorism.

Arguably, the most common finding in cross-national studies is that democracies experience more terrorism. This finding is fairly widely replicated, across studies of attack frequency, attack lethality, group emergence, as well as the count of groups in a country.[4] A large literature has grown out of this finding that seeks to unpack and understand the mechanism (or mechanisms) driving this pattern. This development bears some resemblance to the massive ‘democratic peace’ literature that explores why democracies do not tend to use military force against other democracies in inter-state disputes.[5] The finding is fairly widely replicated, and much effort has gone into explaining it.[6] In fact, researchers in the terrorism literature have begun to explore the importance of institutional variation among democracies, with work on electoral institutions, the level of political competition, and executive constraints among other factors.[7] The motivation to distinguish among democracies is similar to work in international conflict that distinguishes between new and established democracies, or draws key differences among parliamentary democracies.[8] This parallel with one of the better developed and long established areas in the international conflict literature, which has roots going back more than four decades, illustrates how quickly the cross-national study of terrorism has developed. While the theoretical literature has not necessarily grown as quickly as the empirical literature, several important developments have been made here as well.

Specifically, much progress has been made thinking about groups that utilize terrorist violence as rational and strategic actors. Building on the seminal work by Sandler, Tschirhart and Couley,[9] as well as Crenshaw[10] and others, scholars have developed a useful set of ideas about how the use of terrorist tactics fits within a larger strategy relative to a set of political goals. In fact, even work that does not explicitly adopt a strategic or game-theoretic framework often uses this kind of logic. Much of the growing body of theoretical work on terrorism explores the strategic rationale behind the use of terrorist violence and particularly how terrorists interact and bargain with the governments they target.

This article argues that important work remains to tie these related strands of literature together in terrorism research. Much quantitative literature on terrorism implicitly examines the relationship between groups and governments. However, theoretical ideas about how group-government interactions influence patterns in terrorist violence are not often directly modeled. This article proceeds as follows. First, the key theoretical ideas about how terrorist violence is strategic relative to a target government are surveyed, with a focus on studies that explore regime type as a key factor. This review suggests that the connections between seemingly disparate strands of the literature are quite close. Next, the argument is made that group-government interactions are often not identified in a theoretically palatable way by either our econometric models or the most often analyzed data sets. Finally, some tentative suggestions are provided on how future researchers can help bridge these gaps. Future researchers need to collect data that does a better job identifying group-government interactions, better incorporate theory into their statistical models, and exploit important synergies between cross-national quantitative and conflict or group specific qualitative work.

 

Regime Type and Group-Government Interaction

Much recent work on terrorism theoretically focuses on some aspect of the interaction between groups and the government targeted by their political demands. There are several key aspects of the relationship between a targeted government and terrorist groups that have received attention in the literature. First, a strand of literature focuses on the ability of governments to respond forcefully to terrorist campaigns. A second strand of literature focuses on ease of ‘peaceful’ access to the political system. Finally, another strand of literature focuses on whether governments respond to terrorism with concessions or not.[11] Furthermore, much of the work connecting terrorist violence to political institutions or government response focuses on regime type as a key variable. These strands in the literature are outlined, followed by a discussion of how the field can improve via better linkage among them and improved research design.

 

To Provoke or Not To Provoke?

A prominent idea that connects terrorist attacks and government response is that groups can benefit from provoking a draconian government response, an idea that has also been promoted by theorists such as Fanon[12] and Marighella.[13] Kydd and Walter term this a “strategy of provocation”,[14] arguing that groups strategically use terrorist attacks to provoke a counterproductive government response. The key for a terrorist group using a provocation strategy is getting the government to employ harsh responses that lead to significant collateral damage, or negative externalities. The exact nature of the externality and the mechanism by which it helps the group varies. Lake[15] argues that a harsh government response sends a signal to potential group supporters that the government is not moderate and unwilling to negotiate. Bueno de Mesquita suggests that a government’s counterterrorism response can have negative economic externalities that make potential recruits easier for the group.[16] Bueno de Mesquita and Dickson allow for a harsh response to help a group due to either economics or through government signaling its “type”.[17] Regardless of the exact mechanism, the basic argument is that groups use terrorism in part to provoke a harsh government response that can be helpful to them.

Despite the recent prominence of the provocation idea, a large body of work argues that terrorism is often deterred by the prospect of a harsh government response. In his study of suicide terrorism, Pape argues that terrorism is used against democracies precisely because they are constrained in responding harshly with brute force.[18] Similarly, Li finds that governments with more constrained executives experience more (transnational) terrorist attacks.[19] The argument is that an institutional setup that constrains the executive makes it more difficult to employ a swift and effective response to attack campaigns. Scholars such as Schmid [20] or Li[21] argue that democracies typically have far greater constraints on their executives, which may help explain why democracies experience more terrorism.[22] In sum, this strand of thought about government response suggests that groups do not prosper in the face of swift and perhaps harsh government responses. The reason for this could be that they strategically employ terrorism against regimes that are less likely or able to forcefully respond,[23] or perhaps that they are much more likely survive the government onslaught in regimes that are unable or unwilling to employ maximum repression.

While the ‘provocation’ and ‘avoidance’ ideas about the effect of harsh government response seem at odds with each other, they are potentially reconcilable.[24] Kydd and Walter suggest that democratic regimes are the most susceptible to a strategy of provocation.[25] Democracies are unable to be maximally repressive in response, but also face considerable public pressure to respond forcefully and observably.[26] Thus, the argument is that they often respond harshly enough to generate negative externalities, but not forcefully enough to eliminate a group.[27] If this were true empirically, it could help to explain why democracies experience more terrorism and be consistent with a broader pattern of groups avoiding targeting particularly repressive regimes.

Relatedly, there is evidence that variation in how much terrorist activity particular democratic regimes face across time is affected by government ideology. The basic idea is that right-oriented governments are more apt to use force in response to terrorism, whereas left-oriented governments are more apt to be concessionary.[28] Berrebi and Klor show that right-wing party governments in Israel experience less terrorism than left-wing party governments.[29] Koch and Cranmer replicate this finding in a cross-national study, showing that left-oriented governments experience more transnational terrorist attacks than right-wing governments.[30] In sum, there is evidence that within democracies, variation in levels of terrorism is explained by the ruling party’s willingness to respond forcefully to attacks.

The notion that democracies are not as capable of forceful counterterrorism responses is related to a broader set of ideas about liberal democracy and terrorism. Numerous scholars have suggested that freedoms of association, movement, and related political rights facilitate the organization and operation of terrorist organizations in democratic regimes.[31] Thus, democracies are more attractive targets not only because they are not good at employing brutal forceful responses, but because their liberal policies facilitate the formation and maintenance of organizations. This is likely important because violent dissident groups are typically not terribly powerful and consist of a small number of members, especially when they are recently formed. An implication of this argument is that the lack of political freedom in autocratic regimes makes the start-up of dissident organizations much more difficult. For example, it would be difficult for a democracy in Western Europe to make membership in the Muslim Brotherhood punishable by death, which Hafez al-Assad’s Syrian government did in the early 1980s.

There is reason to doubt explanations of terrorism that focus on how constrained governments are in their ability to repress. The literature on authoritarianism points out that repression is a risky strategy that is not obviously a dominant one for autocrats,[32] which is related to the focus in that literature on how and why autocrats purchase loyalty.[33] Aksoy, Carter and Wright show that not all non-democracies are less likely to experience terrorism than democracies.[34] Not only is there significant variation among autocracies with different institutional makeup, but autocracies in which the opposition is organized via active political parties (legal or otherwise) experience levels of terrorism not significantly different from democracies. While participation in autocratic legislatures can reduce the incentives to use terrorism, the increased collective action capacity of the opposition in these regimes makes terrorism significantly more likely than in non-democracies with no opposition parties. Relatedly, Findley and Young show that the existence of an independent judiciary is associated with less terrorism.[35] They argue that an independent judiciary, whether in a democracy or non-democracy, makes bargains between terrorist groups and the government more credible, as future governments cannot as easily renege and crack down on the group.

This discussion highlights how the focus on constraints on democracies’ repressive capacities relative to non-democracies is questionable. Accordingly, a related vein of literature focuses on other important political institutions that are significant and can provide alternative explanations for why democracies have generally experienced more terrorism than non-democracies. Specifically, too much focus on repressive capacity tells us a very incomplete story about institutions that affect dissidents’ decisions to attempt to influence politics via violence or peaceful participation.

 

Alternatives to Violence?

Another prominent set of arguments about why some regimes experience more terrorism relies on differences in how political institutions relate to policy-making. This strand of literature (at least implicitly) points out the importance of viewing the use of terrorist tactics as one choice in a wider array of instruments. The focus is thus on how political institutions either make peaceful participation relatively fruitful (or not). The comparison to autocracies is again often a motivation for scholars, although most extant studies focus much more on democratic institutions relative to autocratic institutions.

The literature that focuses on the influence of domestic political institutions emphasizes that groups choose between peaceful and non-peaceful participation. Chenoweth and Stephan [36] provide evidence that suggests that non-violent resistance movements are considerably more successful than violent resistance movements.[37] Relatedly, Abrahms [38] provides evidence that groups that employ terrorism are rarely successful, which is at odds with the arguments of scholars such as Pape.[39] These findings raise serious questions about why groups choose terrorism and why terrorism is more frequent in democracies. If groups employ the tactic of terrorism with a policy goal in mind, as much of the literature presumes, then why the dismal track record? Furthermore, why are democracies, who provide peaceful means to redress grievances targeted disproportionately?

Young and Dugan focus on the number of veto points faced by political actors interested in changing government policies.[40] Since by definition, terrorist groups seek political goals, the ease of attaining these goals peacefully influences their willingness to use violence, which is costly. Young and Dugan show that countries with a higher number of veto players that can block potential policy changes through the ‘normal’ political process experience more terrorist attacks.[41] This is further evidence consistent with the idea that terrorism is one of several potential instruments that can be used to attempt to influence or change policy. The number of veto players is quite highly correlated with democracy, which suggests that this may be a compelling explanation for why democracies have experienced more terrorism. The question is whether veto players in non-democratic and democratic regimes are comparable in terms of how amenable they are to influence. For instance, pivotal players in U.S. politics can be intensively lobbied and elected officials can be voted out of office. However, this does not work in as clear of a manner for dictators or key member of a dictator’s winning coalition.

Another set of studies focuses on how electoral institutions influence the ease of access to the political system. The seminal work here is Powell’s 1982 study; he shows that democracies with more permissive electoral rules are better able to channel dissent to peaceful forms of participation.[42] The basic theoretical idea is that proportional electoral systems are better suited to peacefully accommodate a diverse set of political interests relative to majoritarian or plurality rules.[43] Small or politically marginal groups have a better chance of gaining representation when electoral thresholds are lower. On the face of it, this idea holds a lot of promise for explaining terrorism with domestically oriented goals.

Li initially explored this idea in an analysis of transnational terrorism, although the connection between electoral system type and transnational terrorism was not found to be robust.[44] Aksoy and Carter find evidence that electoral rules affect domestically oriented groups conditional on their goal structures.[45] The emergence of groups with within-system goals (i.e., policy changes within the existing system) is lower when electoral rules are more permissive, while groups with anti-system goals—i.e., goals that necessitate a complete overthrow of the existing regime—are not affected by electoral rules.[46] Furthermore, the higher rate of group emergence in democracies is a function of anti-system groups, as democracies are not more likely to experience within-system group emergence.[47] This helps to reconcile the puzzle of why democracies, with greater opportunity to peacefully access the political system, experience more terrorism.

The prospect of access to the political system via peaceful participation undoubtedly affects the calculation of many groups considering the use of violence. However, more intense political competition has been suggested to be associated with higher volumes of terrorist activity. Chenoweth shows that countries with greater levels of inter-group political competition experience more terrorism.[48] Given that democracies typically have higher levels of political competition via elections, this is proffered as an explanation for why democracies experience more terrorism. Aksoy shows that terrorist attacks are clustered around election times, but that the relationship is only significant in countries with restrictive (i.e., majoritarian) electoral systems.[49] Thus, around election times when political competition is most intense, competition is related to terrorism but only when competition tends to exclude small or marginal groups.

 

Tactical Choice and Government Response

Much of the literature (at least implicitly) analyzes terrorist groups’ choice between terrorism and peaceful means of participation. However, there is also much to explore about groups’ choice among different violent tactics. It is well-known that in many cases groups that use terrorist tactics are also groups that use guerrilla (or insurgent) tactics.[50] Daniel Byman put it well in stating that “not all groups that use terrorism are guerrillas but almost all guerrillas use terrorism.”[51] Thus, for many groups with political goals, the choice is not between peaceful politics or the use of terrorist tactics; rather, the choice set also includes using guerrilla tactics by targeting government forces directly.

A recent wave of work has began to explore groups’ tactical choice. Bueno de Mesquita argues that groups employ terrorist tactics when they do not have enough public support to sustain “war-fighting” or guerrilla tactics.[52] This mirrors the ideas of de la Calle and Sánchez-Cuenca, who argue that groups use guerrilla tactics when and where they control territory, while those that are too weak relative to the government to control territory use terrorism.[53] Rebel groups are able to control territory when they face weak low-capacity governments. The connection to the civil war literature here is important, as state capacity is a key factor in civil war onset.[54] In fact, Findley and Young show that much of the terrorism measured by the Global Terrorism Database (GTD) takes place during civil wars in the regions where fighting is ongoing.[55]

Abrahms finds that groups who initiate terrorist campaigns are much less effective than groups who pursue guerrilla campaigns.[56] He argues that governments resist providing concessions to groups that target civilians. Carter explores how groups choose tactics in anticipation of the government’s response.[57] He analyzes Western European democracies’ responses to terrorism since 1950, which is well-suited to an investigation of whether groups indeed play a “strategy of provocation.”[58] Interestingly, the evidence suggests that groups strategically employ terrorist tactics (as opposed to guerrilla tactics) when they want to avoid a government crackdown. Moreover, about one-third of the groups included in his analysis mix tactics across time, which suggests that studying either guerrilla or terrorist tactics in isolation is likely problematic.

These studies suggest that future empirical work needs to more explicitly account for how terrorist group decisions are a function of anticipated government response. This is a theoretical point that is well-established (for example, see Crenshaw [59], Sandler, Tschirhart and Couley[60], Bueno de Mesquita[61], Bapat[62]). However, the integration of this insight into quantitative empirical work on terrorism is underdeveloped. Furthermore, while Carter [63] analyzes whether a government responds forcefully or not to an attack, much of our theory also speaks to whether groups expect to extract concessions through the use of violence (for example, Pape [64], Bueno de Mesquita[65], Bapat [66]). A study by Dugan and Chenoweth [67] represents an important step in this direction, as they introduce data that connects violence to government crackdowns and conciliation in Israel. They argue that conciliatory responses to terrorism are quite effective relative to forceful response.

Some of the best work on how different government policies affect insurgent violence has been done using micro-level data on particular conflicts. For instance, Berman, Shapiro and Felter [68] show that when a government effectively improves service provision, this reduces insurgent violence. This is a very important finding, as it suggests that we need to account for how a wider range of government actions relate to the choices violent groups make. Furthermore, Condra and Shapiro [69] and Blair et al.[70] provide striking evidence that we also need to give careful thought to the role of the civilian population in conflicts. Although civilians almost always play a role in theory (if only implicitly), detailed data on civilian reactions to the government, a violent group, and the outcome that comes from their interaction is lacking in cross-national empirical work.

In sum, this discussion suggests several inferential challenges that faces future researchers. First, as Byman’s analysis suggests, many groups simultaneously use a mix of tactics, so violent groups might use terrorism until they gain enough public support to control territory and employ guerrilla tactics.[71] Thus, scholars analyzing terrorism in isolation may make mistaken conclusions about the overall level of violence in a country. Furthermore, if the choice among tactics is strategic and related to government response, which public theorists such as Marighella suggest, analysis of groups’ choices of tactics without taking into account government response can lead to incorrect inferences.[72] Finally, the public is widely thought to play a key role in whether violent groups are successful or not and both violent groups and the government have incentives to work for public support.[73] Thus, future researchers should continue to strive towards analysis of terrorism that accounts for the broader context.

 

Connecting Theory and Data

Progress has been made in thinking about tactical choice (either peaceful or violent) and government response. However, much potential progress remains, as existing methods of analyzing terrorism data and the quality of commonly used data sources themselves are often inadequate relative to theory. Furthermore, the face validity of how we interpret the results from cross-national regressions is often questionable. There are three big issues to be discussed here.

First, existing cross-national data sources on terrorism have significant shortcomings. The range and quality of the cross-national data sources on terrorism have increased considerably. However, most of the data sources record individual attacks, i.e., event data, without much information on government response. Furthermore, given that the decision-making unit of interest is the group, more group-level data sources are in order.[74] Finally, beyond the need for more and better refined group-level data, we need data that connects group decisions explicitly to actions of the targeted state. Given that much of our theory links groups’ choices of tactic to the anticipated response of the targeted government, our data needs to contain this information. Relatedly, the country-year format in which we measure the number of attacks, lethality of attacks, or number of groups contained in a country is not ideal to assess ideas about group-state interaction. This is related to the point made by Young and Findley that monadic analysis is not always appropriate.[75] An early and important example of work that accounts for both group attacks and government responses was provided in 1993 by Enders and Sandler.[76]

Second, the standard methods we use to model terrorism data are often not good matches for our theory. A wide range of studies put forth a theoretical idea that relies on strategic interaction between groups and the government. However, the standard quantitative empirical approach does not model this interaction or explicitly account for how it should affect key relationships between variables. Rather, typical empirical models assume that the dependent variable (e.g., the count of terrorist incidents in a given country in a given year) is a linear function of a set of important variables (e.g., executive constraints), and that the relationship between the independent variables and the dependent variable can be modeled with a functional form such as the widely used negative binomial model. It is well known that the standard approach to modeling these variables is not necessarily consistent with the idea that the relationship between groups and governments is strategic. [77] Furthermore, this can lead to bias in estimation that is equivalent to the well known problem of omitted variable bias.[78]

To make this point more concrete, consider as an important explanatory variable the degree of centralization of a country's police force. Thus, for the purposes of illustration, suppose that our interest is in how police centralization affects both a group's utility for using terrorism and the government's utility for responding forcefully to an attack. For a group, a decentralized security or police force, e.g., the United Kingdom during the 1970s, perhaps makes a swift and unified response to terrorist incidents difficult. When a group makes the decision to use terrorism or not, they strategically anticipate government response and take into account the structure of the country’s police force in assessing what the character of the response will be. Thus, suppose a group’s utility for employing terrorism is positively influenced by the degree of decentralization of the security apparatus. For low or moderate levels of terrorism, the government might be constrained from responding effectively to the threat.

However, if the threat becomes great enough, as it did in the case of the UK in Northern Ireland, a government will be pushed to find a way to deal with the threat from terrorism in a unified manner. In the case of the UK, because of the decentralized nature of the police force the special counterterrorism unit was tied to the military rather than the police. Several observers suggest that because the IRA (and other groups) faced a counterterrorism unit tied to the military, this explains the harsh response relative to what groups faced in other Western European countries such as Germany (for example, see Peter Chalk’s study of West European terrorism and counter-terrorism [79]). Thus, in estimating how the level of decentralization in the police affects the group’s utility for employing terrorism, we need to account for how government response to group attacks can affect the attractiveness or effectiveness of attack campaigns.  In this illustrative example, increasing levels of group violence up to a point might benefit the group but start to hurt the group if the campaign becomes so violent that the government is pushed to implement a harsh response that will be very costly to the group.

This illustrative example suggests that group decisions to carry out fewer or more attacks, or to carry out attacks of greater or lesser severity do not necessarily have monotonic effects on the group’s welfare.[80] By this, we mean that the effect of increasing or decreasing the severity of an attack campaign does not always strictly increase or decrease the group’s utility. Rather, for example, it can increase initially at low to medium levels of violence and then decrease at very high levels of violence. Unfortunately, our standard empirical specifictions do not accommodate this kind of logic. Important exceptions in the terrorism literature are Carter [81] and Dugan and Chenoweth.[82] Carter uses a strategic choice model along the lines suggested by Signorino,[83] while Dugan and Chenoweth uses a flexible non-parametric model that has the potential to pick up these kinds of relationships.[84] This is a hard problem, as most of our data is not designed in a way that makes this kind of modeling approach straightforward.

Specifically, to estimate a model that accounts for strategic interaction, the data needs to include dependent variables measuring group and government choices. Furthermore, the dependent variables measuring group and government actions need to be theoretically linked to each other. Thus, for each group attack we need to measure the government’s response to that specific attack. Also, given that a group chooses between different tactics, peaceful and violent, we ideally want to be able to measure peaceful and violent tactics and the government’s response to them. This is undoubtedly a high standard for data collection. However, it is attainable as recent data collection efforts have began to measure a variety of group and government tactics (e.g. Dugan and Chenoweth). [85]

Third, the way we interpret key results from our econometric models could be improved. While there are several potential areas of improvement, I will focus here on the connection between key results and important cases. Interpretation of important results, such as how higher levels of executive constraints are associated with more terrorism, usually have clear implications for important cases. However, it is not as common as it could be in the quantitative empirical literature to build case studies (or even brief case illustrations) in our papers to aid in interpreting results.

It would improve the face validity of key results if scholars employed something similar to a “most likely” criterion to choose particular cases to further explore key results from a statistical model.[86] Thus, if high levels of executive constraints really encourage small or marginal political groups to employ terrorism,[87] what is the case or set of cases in which we should most likely see qualitative evidence of this? This is similar to the mixed-methods approach advocated by Lieberman [88] in comparative politics research. In the field of terrorism studies, it also suggests a way for qualitative and quantitative scholars to exploit natural synergies and connections in their research. Ideally, examination of a “most-likely” case (or set of cases) can be done both qualitatively and relative to the predictions of researchers’ statistical models for the case being examined.[89]

 

Conclusions

Much progress has been made in the literature studying terrorism and political violence over the last decade or more. More specifically, the proliferation of cross-national quantitative empirical work on terrorism has generated numerous insights. In particular, a large body of work has improved our understanding of the relationship between regime type and terrorism. Much of this work puts forth an argument for why democracies experience more terrorism than non-democracies. The argument in this paper suggests that several of the key explanations for why democracies experience more terrorism are linked.

Future research should work to develop better data and more theoretically appropriate empirical models that can exploit these linkages. The volume of published work is impressive and the key findings are helpful to both scholars and policy-makers. However, much remains to be done to empirically explore how political institutions and other key regime attributes influence the incentives of groups to use violent and peaceful tactics. Furthermore, our understanding of how group decisions strategically anticipate government actions is underdeveloped. This underdevelopment is largely a function of existing data sources, although the field is rapidly advancing on this front.

Finally, cross-national empirical work should make more use of key cases to probe the plausibility of key findings. Researchers’ suggestion that some set of variables has an effect on patterns of terrorism almost always has bearing on relevant cases. Consider a claim such as “higher levels of executive constraints increase incentives to resort to terrorism.” If this is a valid claim, researchers should be able to examine cases in which executive constraints are high, and perhaps other contextual variables are favorable (e.g., high electoral thresholds) and find some evidence that these factors are associated with both group members’ decision to use terrorism and governments’ inability to effectively respond to terrorist campaigns. This ‘mixed method approach’ has the potential to complement further exploration of the interactions between dissident groups and the governments they target.

 

Acknowledgments

I thank James Forest and Jake Shapiro for helpful comments.

 

About the Author: David B. Carter is Assistant Professor in the Department of Politics at Princeton University. Email: [email protected]

 

Notes

[1] Alex P. Schmid, 1992. “Terrorism and Democracy.” Terrorism and Political Violence 4 (4): 14–25.

[2] William Lee Eubank and Leonard Weinberg. 1994. “Does Democracy Encourage Terrorism?” Terrorism and Political Violence 6(4): 417–43.

[3] Walter Enders and Todd Sandler. 1993. “The Effectiveness of Antiterrorism Policies: A Vector-Autoregression-Intervention Analysis.” The American Political Science Review 87(4):829–844; Walter Enders and Todd Sandler. 1999. “Transnational Terrorism in the Post Cold War Era.” International Studies Quarterly 43:145–167; Walter Enders and Todd Sandler. 2002. “Patterns of Transnational Terrorism, 1970–1999: Alternative Time-Series Estimates.” International Studies Quarterly 46(2): 145–165; Walter Enders and Todd Sandler. 2006. The Political Economy of Terrorism. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

[4] Victor Asal and R. Karl Rethemeyer. 2008. “The Nature of the Beast: Organizational Structures and the Lethality of Terrorist Attacks.” Journal of Politics 70(2): 437–449; Erica Chenoweth, 2010. “Democratic Competition and Terrorist Activity.” Journal of Politics 72(1): 16-30; William Lee Eubank and Leonard Weinberg. 1994. “Does Democracy Encourage Terrorism?” Terrorism and Political Violence 6(4):417–43; William Lee Eubank and Leonard Weinberg. 2001. “Terrorism and Democracy: Perpetrators and Victims.” Terrorism and Political Violence 13(1):155–64; Quan Li, 2005. “Does Democracy Promote or Reduce Transnational Terrorist Incidents?” Journal of Conflict Resolution 49(2): 278–297; Quan Li and Drew Schaub. 2004. “Economic Globalization and Transnational Terrorist Incidents: A Pooled Time Series Analysis.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 48(2):230–58; Robert A. Pape, 2003. “The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism.” American Political Science Review 97(3):  343–361; Alex P. Schmid, 1992. “Terrorism and Democracy.” Terrorism and Political Violence 4(4):14–25; Leonard B. Weinberg and William L. Eubank. 1998. “Democracy and Terrorism: What Recent Events Disclose.” Terrorism and Political Violence 10(1): 108-18; Joseph K. Young and Laura Dugan. 2011. “Veto Players and Terror.” Journal of Peace Research 48(1): 19-33.

[5]  Dean Babst, 1972. “A Force for Peace.” Industrial Research, pp. 55-58; Stuart A. Bremer, 1992. “Dangerous Dyads: Conditions Affecting the Likelihood of Interstate War, 1816–1965.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 36(2): 309–341; William J. Dixon, 1994. “Democracy and the Peaceful Settlement of International Conflict.” American Political Science Review 88(1):14–32; Bruce Russett, 1993. Grasping the Democratic Peace: Principles for a Post-Cold War World. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press; Marvin Small and J. David Singer. 1976. “The War-Proneness of Democratic Regimes, 1816–1965.” Jerusalem Journal of International Relations 1: 50–68.

[6]  Bruce Bueno de Mesquita, Alastair Smith, Randolph M. Siverson and James D. Morrow. 1999. “An Institutional Explanation of the Democratic Peace.” American Political Science Review  93:791-807; James Fearon, 1994. “Domestic Political Audiences and the Escalation of International Disputes.” The American Political Science Review 88(3): 577-592; Erik Gartzke, 2007. “The Capitalist Peace.” American Journal of Political Science 51(1): 166-191; Paul K. Huth and Todd L. Allee. 2002. “Domestic Political Accountability and the Escalation and Settlement of International Disputes.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 46(6):754-790; Michael Mousseau, 2000. “Market Prosperity, Democratic Consolidation, and Democratic Peace.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 44(4): 472-507; Bruce Russett and John Oneal. 2001. Triangulating Peace: Democracy, Interdependence, and International Organizations. New York, NY: W.W. Norton; Kenneth A. Schultz. 2001. Democracy and Coercive Diplomacy. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press; Michael Tomz, 2007. “Domestic Audience Costs in International Relations: An Experimental Approach.” International Organization 61(4):821-40. - There have also been significant and effective critiques of the democratic peace finding, most notably by Joanne Gowa, 2000. Ballots and Bullets: The Elusive Democratic Peace. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. Interestingly, the notion that democracies experience more terrorism has also been recently challenged – cf. Konstantinos Drakos and Andreas Gofas. 2006. “The Devil You Know but Are Afraid to Face: Underreporting Bias and its Distorting Effects on the Study of Terrorism.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 50(5):714-735; Sara Jackson Wade and Dan Reiter. 2007. “Does Democracy Matter? Regime Type and Suicide Terrorism.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 51(2): 329–348; and Deniz Aksoy, David B. Carter and Joseph Wright. 2012. “Terrorism in Dictatorships.” Journal of Politics, forthcoming.

[7] See Quan Li, 2005. “Does Democracy Promote or Reduce Transnational Terrorist Incidents?” Journal of Conflict Resolution 49(2):278–297; Deniz Aksoy and David B. Carter. 2012. “Electoral Institutions and the Emergence of Terrorist Groups.” British Journal of Political Science Forthcoming; Erica Chenoweth, 2010. “Democratic Competition and Terrorist Activity.” Journal of Politics 72(1): 16–30.

[8] Edward D. Mansfield and Jack Snyder, 1995. “Democratization and the Danger of War.” International Security 20(1): 5-38; Glenn Palmer, Tamar London and Patrick Regan. 2004. “What’s Stopping You? The Sources of Political Constraints on International Conflict Behavior in Parliamentary Democracies.” International Interactions 30 (1): 1–24.

[9] Todd Sandler, John T. Tschirhart and Jon Couley. 1983. “A Theoretical Analysis of Transactional Terrorism.” American Political Science Review 77(4): 36-56; Scott E. Atkinson, Todd Sandler and John Tschirhart. 1987. “Terrorism in a Bargaining Framework.” Journal of Law and Economics 30(1):1–21; Harvey E. Lapan and Todd Sandler. 1988. “To Bargain or Not To Bargain: That is the Question.” The American Economic Review 78(2): 263–296.

[10] Martha Crenshaw, 1981. “The Causes of Terrorism.” Comparative Politics 13(4): 379–399.

[11] Obviously, these three strands are related. They are discussed separately here for the sake of analytic clarity. Also, this is clearly not an exhaustive review, as there is simply not space enough in this article to provide a comprehensive summary of the literature.

[12] Frantz Fanon, 1964. Toward the African Revolution: Political Essays. New York, NY: Grove Press. Translation by Haakon Chevalier; and Frantz Fanon, 1961. The Wretched of the Earth. New York: Grove Press. Translation (2004 edition) by Richard Philcox.

[13] Carlos Marighella, 1971. “Minimanual of the Urban Guerrilla.” Survival: Global Politics and Strategy 13(3):95–100.

[14] Andrew Kydd and Barbara Walter. 2006. “The Strategies of Terrorism.” International Security 31(1): 49–80; See also, Ariel Merari, 1993. “Terrorism as a Strategy of Insurgency.” Terrorism and Political Violence 5(4): 213-251.

[15] Lake, David A. 2002. “Rational Extremism: Understanding Terrorism in the Twenty-first Century.” International Organization Dialog-IO:15–29.

[16] Ethan Bueno de Mesquita. 2005b. “The Quality of Terror.” American Journal of Political Science 49(3):515–530.

[17] Ethan Bueno de Mesquita and Eric S. Dickson. 2006. “The Propaganda of the Deed: Terrorism, Counterterrorism, and Mobilization.” American Journal of Political Science 51(2): 364–381.

[18] Robert A. Pape 2003. “The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism.” American Political Science Review 97(3): 343–361. However, for objections to his research design, see Scott Ashworth, Joshua Clinton, Adam Meirowitz and Kristopher Ramsay. 2008. “Design, Inference, and the Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism.” The American Political Science Review 102(2): 269–273; and for cross-national empirical evidence that does not support his argument, see James Piazza, 2008. “A Supply-Side View of Suicide Terrorism: A Cross-National Study.” Journal of Politics 70(1):28–39

[19] Quan Li, 2005. “Does Democracy Promote or Reduce Transnational Terrorist Incidents?” Journal of Conflict Resolution 49(2): 278–297.

[20] Alex P. Schmid, 1992. “Terrorism and Democracy.” Terrorism and Political Violence 4(4): 14–25.

[21] Quan Li, 2005. “Does Democracy Promote or Reduce Transnational Terrorist Incidents?” Journal of Conflict Resolution 49(2): 278–297.

[22] However, for an argument against a predominant focus on repression as an explanation for why non-democratic regimes experience less terrorism, see Eli Berman, Jacob N. Shapiro and Joseph H. Felter. 2011. “Can Hearts and Minds Be Bought? The Economics of Counterinsurgency in Iraq.” Journal of Political Economy 119(4): 766–819

[23] Robert A. Pape, 2003. “The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism.” American Political Science Review 97(3): 343–361

[24] This terminology is borrowed from David B. Carter, 2012b. “The Strategic Logic of Violent Attacks: Tactical Choice and Government Response.” Working Paper, Princeton University.

[25] Andrew Kydd and Barbara Walter. 2006. “The Strategies of Terrorism.” International Security 31(1): 49–80.

[26] Ethan Bueno de Mesquita. 2007. “Politics and the Suboptimal Provision of Counterterror.” International Organization 61(1): 9–36. Also, for evidence that genocide is usually a response to insurgency, see Benjamin A. Valentino, 2005. Final Solutions: Mass Killing and Genocide in the 20th Century. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.

[27] Kydd and Walter. 2006, op. cit., 70–72.

[28] For nice examples of how these factors operate in inter-state disputes, see Glenn Palmer, Tamar London and Patrick Regan. 2004. “What’s Stopping You? The Sources of Political Constraints on International Conflict Behavior in Parliamentary Democracies.” International Interactions 30(1): 1–24, and Philip Arena and Glenn Palmer. 2009. “Politics or the Economy? Domestic Correlates of Dispute Involvement in Developed Democracies.” International Studies Quarterly 53(4): 955–975

[29] Claude Berrebi and Esteban F. Klor. 2006. “On Terrorism and Electoral Outcomes: Theory and Evidence from the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 50(6): 899–925.

[30] Michael T. Koch and Skyler Cranmer. 2007. “Testing the “Dick Cheney” Hypothesis: Do Governments of the Left Attract More Terrorism than Governments of the Right?” Conflict Management and Peace Science 24(4): 311–326.

[31] Alex P. Schmid, 1992, op. cit.; William Lee Eubank and Leonard Weinberg. 1994. “Does Democracy Encourage Terrorism?” Terrorism and Political Violence 6(4):417–43; Leonard B. Weinberg and William L. Eubank. 1998. “Democracy and Terrorism: What Recent Events Disclose.” Terrorism and Political Violence 10(1): 108-18; Joe Eyerman, 1992. “Terrorism and Democratic States: Soft Targets or Accessible Systems.” International Interactions 24(2):151–70; William Lee Eubank and Leonard Weinberg. 2001. “Terrorism and Democracy: Perpetrators and Victims.” Terrorism and Political Violence 13(1):155–64; Robert Pape, 2003.

[32] Ronald Wintrobe, 1998. The Political Economy of Dictatorship. New York: Cambridge University Press; Stephen Haber, 2006. Authoritarian Government. In: Barry R. Weingast and Donald Wittman (eds.). The Oxford Handbook of Political Economy, Oxford: University Press pp. 693–707; Milan Svolik, 2010. “Contracting on Violence: Authoritarian Repression and Military Intervention in Politics.” https://netfiles.uiuc.edu/msvolik/www/research/violence.pdf.

[33] Lisa Blaydes, 2011. Elections and Distributive Politics in Mubarak’s Egypt. New York: Cambridge University Press; Charles Boix and Milan Svolik. 2008. Foundations of Limited Authoritarian Government: Institutions and Power-sharing in Dictatorships. In Dictatorships: Their Governance and Social Consequences. Princeton University, April 25-26, 2008; Jason Brownlee, 2007. Authoritarianism in the Age of Democratization. New York: Cambridge University Press; Jennifer Gandhi, 2008. Political Institutions under Dictatorship. New York: Cambridge University Press; Jennifer Gandhi and Adam Przeworski. 2006. “Cooperation, Cooptation, and Rebellion under Dictatorships.” Economics and Politics 18(1):1–26; Ellen Lust-Okar, 2006. “Elections under authoritarianism: preliminary lessons from Jordan.” Democratization 13(3):456–71; Beatriz Magaloni, 2006. Voting for Autocracy: Hegemonic Party Survival and its Demise in Mexico. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

[34] Deniz Aksoy, David B. Carter and Joseph Wright. 2012. “Terrorism in Dictatorships.” Journal of Politics 74(3) (July 2012): 810-826

[35] Michael G. Findley and Joseph K. Young. 2011. “Terrorism, Democracy, and Credible Commitments.” International Studies Quarterly 55(2): 357–378.

[36] Erica Chenoweth and Maria J. Stephan. 2011. Why Civil Resistance Works: The Strategic Logic of Nonviolent Conflict. New York, NJ: Columbia University Press; and Maria J. Stephan and Erica Chenoweth. 2008. “Why Civil Resistance Works: The Strategic Logic of Nonviolent Conflict.” International Security 33(1): 7-44.

[37] However, given that peaceful means are presumably less costly than turning to violence, it is plausible that group turn to violence when peaceful means are very unlikely to work. This strategic selection problem remains a task for future empirical work to address.

[38] Max Abrahms, 2006. “Why Terrorism Does Not Work.” International Security 31(2): 42–78.

[39] Robert Pape, 2003. This difference in large part stems from how “success” is defined. While Pape counts things like direct negotiations with the state as a success, Max Abrahms examines whether groups achieve their stated policy objectives, in: Max Abrahms, 2006. “Why Terrorism Does Not Work.” International Security 31(2): 42–78.

[40] Joseph K. Young and Laura Dugan. 2011. “Veto Players and Terror.” Journal of Peace Research 48(1): 19–33. For background on veto players, see George Tsebelis, 2002. Veto Players: How Political Institutions Work. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

[41] Relatedly, more veto players are also found to be associated with longer civil wars. See David E. Cunningham, 2006. “Veto Players and Civil War Duration.” American Journal of Political Science 50(4): 875–892.

[42] G. Bingham Powell, 1982. Contemporary Democracies: Participation, Stability and Violence. Washington, DC: Congressional Quarterly Press.

[43] Arend Lijphart, 1977. Democracy in Plural Societies: A Comparative Exploration. New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press. There is a body of evidence in comparative politics that suggests proportional representation systems more effectively deal with a variety of violent dissent – cf. Frank S. Cohen, 1997. “Proportional Versus Majoritarian Ethnic Conflict Management in Democracies.” Comparative Political Studies 30(5): 607-30; Matthew Krain, 1998. “Violence, and Event Count Models Contemporary Democracies Revisited: Democracy, Political Violence, and Event Count Models.” Comparative Political Studies 31(2):139-64; Marta Reynal-Querol, 2002. “Ethnicity, Political Systems, and Civil Wars.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 46 (1): 29-54; Stephen M. Saideman, David Lanoue, Michael Campenni and Samuel Stanton. 2002. “Democratization, Political Institutions, and Ethnic Conflict: A Pooled, Cross-Sectional Time Series Analysis from 1985-1998.” Comparative Political Studies 35(1): 103-129.

[44] Li, Quan. 2005. “Does Democracy Promote or Reduce Transnational Terrorist Incidents?” Journal of Conflict Resolution 49(2): 278–297.

[45] Deniz Aksoy and David B. Carter. 2012. “Electoral Institutions and the Emergence of Terrorist Groups.” British Journal of Political Science Forthcoming. Also, for another study that finds such evidence studying domestic terrorism, see Alex Braithwaite, Dennis Foster and David Sobek. 2011. “Tyranny of the Majority: Electoral Systems and Terrorism in Western Europe.” International Studies Association Annual Meeting, Monreal, Canada, 2011. For a discussion of the distinctions between transnational and domestic terrorism, see Ignacio Sánchez-Cuenca and Luis de la Calle. 2009. “Domestic Terrorism: The Hidden Side of Political Violence.” Annual Review of Political Science 12: 31–49.

[46] Furthermore, electoral permissiveness is best measured with median or mean district magnitude, as different proportional representation systems differ greatly in terms of threshold. Deniz Aksoy and David B. Carter. 2012. “Electoral Institutions and the Emergence of Terrorist Groups.” British Journal of Political Science, forthcoming; William Roberts Clark and Matt Golder. 2006. “Rehabilitating Duvergers Theory: Testing the Mechanical and Strategic Modifying Effects of Electoral Laws.” Comparative Political Studies 39: 679–708; Matt Golder, 2005. “Democratic Electoral Systems Around the World, 1946–2000.” Electoral Studies 24(1): 103–21; and Burt L. Monroe, 1994. “Understanding Electoral Systems: Beyond Plurality versus PR.” PS: Political Science and Politics 27(4): 667–82.

[47] There is growing evidence that nature of group goals are important to understanding how terrorism relates to political institutions. For instance, there is considerable evidence that the primary goals held by groups, and relatedly their ideology, influence their choice of tactic and the severity of violence they inflict. For example, Piazza (2008) shows that suicide terrorism is more likely to be used by groups that have abstract “universal” political goals, while Horowitz (2010) shows that religious groups are significantly more likely to adopt the tactic. Asal and Rethemeyer (2008) demonstrate that religious groups carry out more lethal attacks, while Carter (2012) shows that governments are less likely to forcefully eliminate religious groups. How group goals and ideology interact with political institutions to influence group-government interactions is undoubtedly an area in need of further research. See James Piazza, 2008. “A Supply-Side View of Suicide Terrorism: A Cross-National Study.” Journal of Politics 70(1):28–39; Michael C. Horowitz, 2010. “Nonstate Actors and the Diffusion of Innovations: The Case of Suicide Terrorism.” International Organization 64(1): 33–64; Victor Asal and R. Karl Rethemeyer. 2008. “The Nature of the Beast: Organizational Structures and the Lethality of Terrorist Attacks.” Journal of Politics 70(2): 437–449; Carter, David B. 2012a. “A Blessing or a Curse? State Support for Terrorist Groups.” International Organization 66(1):129–151.

[48] Erica Chenoweth, 2010. “Democratic Competition and Terrorist Activity.” Journal of Politics 72(1):16–30.

[49] Deniz Aksoy, 2012. “Elections and the Timing of Terrorist Attacks in Democracies.” Working Paper, Princeton University.

[50] Despite some distinctions, I use the terms insurgent tactics and guerrilla tactics interchangeably here. For an enlightening discussion of the distinctions, see Bruce Hoffman, 2006. Inside Terrorism (Revised and Expanded Edition). New York, NY: Columbia University Press

[51] Daniel Byman. 2005. Deadly Connections: States that Sponsor Terrorism. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, p. xx.

[52] Ethan Bueno de Mesquita, 2011. “Rebel Tactics.” Working Paper, University of Chicago.

[53] Luis de la Calle and Ignacio Sánchez-Cuenca. 2012. “Rebels Without a Territory: An Analysis of Non-territorial Conflicts in the World, 1970–1997.” Journal of Conflict Resolution xx (x):1–24.

[54] James D. Fearon and David D. Laitin. 2003. “Ethnicity, Insurgency, and Civil War.” The American Political Science Review 97(1): 75–90

[55] Findley, Michael and Joseph Young. 2010. “Terrorism and Civil War: A Spatial and Temporal Approach to a Conceptual Problem.” Paper Prepared for American Political Science Association Annual Meeting

[56] Max Abrahms, 2012. “The Political Effectiveness of Terrorism Revisited.” Comparative Political Studies 45(3): 366–393.

[57] David B. Carter, 2012. “Provocation and the Strategy of Terrorist and Guerilla Attacks” Working Paper, Princeton University.

[58] Andrew Kydd and Barbara Walter. 2006. “The Strategies of Terrorism.” International Security 31(1):49–80

[59] Martha Crenshaw. 1981. “The Causes of Terrorism.” Comparative Politics 13(4):379–399

[60] Todd Sandler, John T. Tschirhart and Jon Couley. 1983. “A Theoretical Analysis of Transactional Terrorism.” American Political Science Review 77(4): 36–56.

[61] Ethan Bueno de Mesquita, 2005. “Conciliation, Counterterrorism, and Patterns of Terrorist Violence.” International Organization 59:145–176; Ethan Bueno de Mesquita, 2005. “The Quality of Terror.” American Journal of Political Science 49(3):515–530; Ethan Bueno de Mesquita, 2005. “The Terrorist Endgame: A Model With Moral Hazard and Learning.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 49(2): 237–258.

[62] Navin A. Bapat, 2005. “Insurgency and the Opening of Peace Processes.” Journal of Peace Research 42(6): 699–717; Navin A. Bapat, 2006. “State Bargaining with Transnational Terrorist Groups.” International Studies Quarterly 50:213–229.

[63] David B. Carter. 2012b. “Provocation and the Strategy of Terrorist and Guerilla Attacks” Working Paper, Princeton University.

[64] Robert A. Pape. 2003. “The Strategic Logic of Suicide Terrorism.” American Political Science Review 97(3): 343–361

[65] Ethan Bueno de Mesquita. 2005a. “Conciliation, Counterterrorism, and Patterns of Terrorist Violence.” International Organization 59:145–176.

[66] Navin A. Bapat. 2006. “State Bargaining with Transnational Terrorist Groups.” International Studies Quarterly 50:213–229.

[67] Laura Dugan and Erica Chenoweth. 2012. “Moving Beyond Deterrence: The Effectiveness of Raising the Expected Utility of Abstaining from Terrorism in Israel.” American Sociological Review, forthcoming.

[68] Eli Berman, Jacob N. Shapiro and Joseph H. Felter. 2011. “Can Hearts and Minds Be Bought? The Economics of Counterinsurgency in Iraq.” Journal of Political Economy 119(4): 766–819.

[69] Luke Condra and Jacob N. Shapiro. 2012. “Who Takes the Blame? The Strategic Effects of Collateral Damage.” American Journal of Political Science, forthcoming.

[70] Graeme C. Blair,  Christine Fair, Neil Malhotra and Jacob N. Shapiro. 2012. “Poverty and Support for Militant Policies: Evidence from Pakistan.” American Journal of Political Science, forthcoming.

[71] Ethan Bueno de Mesquita, 2011. “Rebel Tactics.” Working Paper, University of Chicago; and Luis de la Calle and Ignacio Sánchez-Cuenca. 2012. “Rebels Without a Territory: An Analysis of Non-territorial Conflicts in the World, 1970–1997.” Journal of Conflict Resolution xx(x):1–24.

[72] Carlos Marighella, 1971. “Minimanual of the Urban Guerrilla,”  98-99.

[73] For a treatment of how Hamas’s social programs are related to public support, see Shaul Mishal and Avraham Sela. 2006. The Palestinian Hamas: Vision, Violence, and Coexistence. New York, NY: Columbia University Press; or Matthew Levitt, 2006. Hamas: Politics, Charity, and Terrorism in the Service of Jihad. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.

[74] There are exceptions, of course. For a database of 648 groups, see Seth G. Jones and Martin C. Libicki. 2006. How Terrorist Groups End: Lessons for Countering al Qaeda. Washington, D.C.: RAND Corporation. For a sample of 367 groups, see S. Brock Blomberg, Khusrav Gaibulloev and Todd Sandler. 2012. “Terrorist Group Survival: Ideology, Tactics, and Base of Operations.” Public Choice, forthcoming. - For a database of 2021 groups based on the Global Terrorism Database (http://www.start.umd.edu/data/gtd ), see Joseph K. Young and Laura Dugan. 2010. “Why do Terrorist Groups Endure?” International Studies Association Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA, Feb. 2010. And the MAROB project is another important new source being developed – see Victor Asal, Amy Pate and Jonathan Wilkenfeld. 2008. “Minorities at Risk Organizational Behavior Data and Codebook.” http://www.cidcm.umd.edu/mar/data.asp .

[75] Joseph K. Young and Michael G. Findley. 2011. “Promise and Pitfalls of Terrorism Research.” International Studies Review 13(1):1–21 Also, Gelpi and Avdan argue that the study of groups with operations in more than one country makes a k-adic approach appropriate. Christopher Gelpi and Nazli Avdan. 2012. “Democracy and the Multilateral Flow of Transnational Terrorism, 1968–2007.” Paper Prepared for Midwest Political Science Association Annual Meeting.. (For details about k-adic approach, see Paul Poast, 2011. “(Mis)Using Dyadic Data to Analyze Multilateral Events.” Political Analysis 18(4): 403–425.

[76] Walter Enders and Todd Sandler. 1993. “The Effectiveness of Antiterrorism Policies: A Vector-Autoregression-Intervention Analysis.” American Political Science Review 87(4): 829 - 844.

[77] Curtis S. Signorino, 1999. “Strategic Interaction and the Statistical Analysis of International Conflict.” American Political Science Review 93(2): 279 - 297.

[78] Curtis S. Signorino and Kuzey Yilmaz. 2003. “Strategic Interaction and the Statistical Analysis of International Conflict.” American Journal of Political Science 47 (3): 551–566.

[79] Peter Chalk, 1993. West European terrorism and counter-terrorism: The evolving dynamic. New York, NY: St. Martin’s Press.

[80] If a variable has a monotonic effect on the group’s utility, this means that increasing the variable strictly increases or decreases its utility. If a variable has a non-monotonic effect on the group’s utility, increasing it can, for example, increase the group’s utility at lower levels of the variable and at higher levels of the variable decrease the group’s utility.

[81] David B. Carter, 2012b. “Provocation and the Strategy of Terrorist and Guerilla Attacks.” Working Paper, Princeton University

[82] Laura Dugan and Erica Chenoweth. 2012. “Moving Beyond Deterrence: The Effectiveness of Raising the Expected Utility of Abstaining from Terrorism in Israel.” American Sociological Review Forthcoming

[83] Curtis S. Signorino. 1999. “Strategic Interaction and the Statistical Analysis of International Conflict.” American Political Science Review 93(2):279 - 297; See also Muhammet Ali Bas, Curtis S. Signorino and Robert W. Walker. 2007. “Statistical Backwards Induction: A Simple Method for Estimating Recursive Strategic Models.” Political Analysis 16: 21 - 41.

[84] For a discussion of the methodology, see Brenton Kenkel and Curtis S. Signorino. 2011. “Data Mining for Theorists.” Unpublished Manuscript, University of Rochester; and for a substantive example, see Kristopher W. Ramsay, 2008. “Settling It on the Field: Battlefield Events and War Termination.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 52(6): 850–79.

[85] Laura Dugan and Erica Chenoweth, 2012, “Moving Beyond Deterrence.” Another promising (and complementary) approach is to focus on careful identification (in the empirical sense) of the effect of key variables, as in Eli Berman, Jacob N. Shapiro and Joseph H. Felter. 2011. “Can Hearts and Minds Be Bought? The Economics of Counterinsurgency in Iraq.” Journal of Political Economy 119(4):766–819. This is preferable when it is unclear what correct theoretical model is or when all the relevant data is too costly to collect.

[86] For a discussion of this, see Harry Eckstein, 1975. Case Studies and Theory in Political Science. New York, NY: Addison-Wesley.

[87] Quan Li. 2005. “Does Democracy Promote or Reduce Transnational Terrorist Incidents?” Journal of Conflict Resolution 49(2): 278–297

[88] Evan Lieberman. 2005. “Nested Analysis as a Mixed-Method Strategy for Comparative Research.” American Political Science Review 99 (3): 435–452.

[89] For an example of this approach, see Deniz Aksoy, David B. Carter and Joseph Wright. 2012. “Terrorism in Dictatorships.” Journal of Politics 74(3) (July 2012): 810-826; or David B. Carter, 2010. “The Strategy of Territorial Conflict.” American Journal of Political Science  54 (4): 969–987.

 

 



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