Hostage taking: Understanding terrorism event dynamics

School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences, GR 31, 800 W. Campbell Road, The University of Texas at Dallas, Richardson, TX 75080-3021, United States
Journal of Policy Modeling (Impact Factor: 1.09). 09/2009; 31(5):758-778. DOI: 10.1016/j.jpolmod.2008.07.003
Source: RePEc


This paper employs advanced time series methods to identify the dynamic properties of three hostage taking series. The immediate and long run multipliers of three covariates--successful past negotiations, violent ends, and deaths--are identified. Each hostage series responds differently to the covariates. Past concessions have the strongest impact on generating future kidnapping events, supporting the conventional wisdom to abide by a stated no-concession policy. Each hostage series has different changepoints caused by a variety of circumstances. Skyjackings and kidnappings are negatively correlated, while skyjackings and other hostage events are positively correlated. Policy recommendations are offered.

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Available from: Patrick Brandt, Oct 02, 2015
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    • "The audience is particularly crucial for terrorist campaigns in liberal democracies, whose legitimacy rests on the ability to protect citizens' lives and property (Wilkinson 1986). Success in obtaining concessions can spur terrorist groups to ratchet up their demands; this success can demonstrate to other terrorist groups that terrorism is effective (Brandt and Sandler 2009). "
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    ABSTRACT: This paper implements discrete-time survival models to ascertain the determinants behind specific endings for terrorist groups during 1970–2007. Based on multinomial logit regressions, we estimate the hazard probabilities associated with three endings for terrorist groups: splintering from internal factors, being defeated by force, and joining the political process or achieving victory. We find that different covariates differentially impact each of these endings. In a second exercise, we split our sample of 586 terrorist groups into those that started before and after the beginning of 1990. In so doing, we find that survival factors differ between the two cohorts of groups. For both exercises, the determinants of survival comprise terrorist groups’ goals, their tactics and size, and base-country characteristics. Robustness tests conclude the paper.
    Public Choice 07/2014; 160(1-2). DOI:10.1007/s11127-013-0136-0 · 0.91 Impact Factor
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    • "Libya in April 1986, the Gulf War in January 1991, and the Abu Ghraib prison revelations in April 2004 (Brandt and Sandler, 2009; Enders and Sandler, 1993 "
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    ABSTRACT: This paper applies principal component analysis to decompose transnational terrorism during 1970-2007 into common (worldwide) and idiosyncratic (country-specific) factors. Regardless of alternative thresholds and filtering procedures, a single common factor is related to individual countries’ transnational terrorist events. Based on a conventional criterion, Lebanon’s transnational terrorism is the key common driver of global transnational terrorist incidents. With a more conservative criterion, four additional countries – USA, Germany, Iraq, and the United Kingdom – are core countries in explaining cross-sectional correlation across 106 countries' transnational terrorism. The analysis shows that there is a marked cross-sectional dependence among transnational terrorist incidents worldwide.
    Economic Inquiry 01/2013; 51(1). DOI:10.1111/j.1465-7295.2012.00469.x · 0.98 Impact Factor
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    • "Empirical investigations of hostage-taking as a terrorism strategy has been done by Brandt and Sandler (2009) and Gaibulloev and Sandler (2009). In the former a time series of hostage-taking events is considered. "
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    ABSTRACT: What factors drive the length of a kidnapping experience? A theoretical model is developed to conduct comparative statics. A unique data set covering all kidnappings for ransom in Sardinia between 1960 and 2010 is analyzed. Factors related to the ability to pay and cost of abduction matter. The effect of policies aimed at deterring the crime have mixed effects on its duration.
    SSRN Electronic Journal 01/2012; DOI:10.2139/ssrn.2109941
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