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Too Much of a Good Thing?

Author

Listed:
  • B. Peter Rosendorff

    (School of International Relations and Department of Economics, University of Southern California)

  • Todd Sandler

    (School of International Relations and Department of Economics, University of Southern California)

Abstract

In a two-player proactive response game the level of proactive activity and the choice of terrorist target is endogenized. The targeted government first chooses its measures to weaken the terrorists, and the terrorists then choose the type of event—normal or spectacular. Unlike previous analyses, proactive policy has a downside by increasing grievances and, consequently, terrorist recruitment. If the government responds too harshly, its actions can empower the terrorists by providing a larger constituency. Aggressive antiterrorist actions, encouraged by a high perceived loss from terrorism and low marginal proactive costs, may result in spectacular events with dire consequences. If spectaculars are transferred abroad to soft targets, then proactive operations may be excessive from a global viewpoint as external costs are ignored. The analysis explains why some target nations engage in a modest level of offense but a prime target chooses a large level.

Suggested Citation

  • B. Peter Rosendorff & Todd Sandler, 2004. "Too Much of a Good Thing?," Journal of Conflict Resolution, Peace Science Society (International), vol. 48(5), pages 657-671, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:jocore:v:48:y:2004:i:5:p:657-671
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. John Cadigan & Pamela Schmitt, 2010. "Strategic entry deterrence and terrorism: Theory and experimental evidence," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 143(1), pages 3-22, April.
    2. Peter Phillips, 2011. "The Life Cycle of Terrorist Organizations," International Advances in Economic Research, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 17(4), pages 369-385, November.
    3. Cárceles-Poveda, Eva & Tauman, Yair, 2011. "A strategic analysis of the war against transnational terrorism," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 71(1), pages 49-65, January.
    4. Jaeger, David A. & Klor, Esteban F. & Miaari, Sami H. & Paserman, M. Daniele, 2012. "The struggle for Palestinian hearts and minds: Violence and public opinion in the Second Intifada," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(3), pages 354-368.
    5. Eric D. Gould & Esteban F. Klor, 2016. "The Long‐run Effect of 9/11: Terrorism, Backlash, and the Assimilation of Muslim Immigrants in the West," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 126(597), pages 2064-2114, November.
    6. Luís A. Gil-Alana & Carlos P. Barros, 2010. "A Note on the Effectiveness of National Anti-Terrorist Policies: Evidence from ETA," Conflict Management and Peace Science, Peace Science Society (International), vol. 27(1), pages 28-46, February.
    7. Efraim Benmelech & Claude Berrebi & Esteban F. Klor, 2010. "The Economic Cost of Harboring Terrorism," Journal of Conflict Resolution, Peace Science Society (International), vol. 54(2), pages 331-353, April.
    8. Azam, Jean-Paul, 2006. "How to Curb "High Quality" Terrorism?," IDEI Working Papers 418, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.
    9. Shortland, Anja & Vothknecht, Marc, 2011. "Combating “maritime terrorism” off the coast of Somalia," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 27(S1), pages 133-151.
    10. Gil Epstein & Ira Gang, 2007. "Who Is The Enemy?," Defence and Peace Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 18(6), pages 469-484.
    11. Subhayu Bandyopadhyay & Todd Sandler, 2011. "The Interplay Between Preemptive and Defensive Counterterrorism Measures: A Two‐stage Game," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 78(311), pages 546-564, July.
    12. Dan Kovenock & Brian Roberson, 2010. "The Optimal Defense of Networks of Targets," Purdue University Economics Working Papers 1251, Purdue University, Department of Economics.
    13. Raphaël Franck & Arye Hillman & Miriam Krausz, 2005. "Public Safety And The Moral Dilemma In The Defense Against Terror," Defence and Peace Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(5), pages 347-364.
    14. Colin Jennings, 2012. "Rationalising ‘'Irrational'' Support for Political Violence," Working Papers 1212, University of Strathclyde Business School, Department of Economics.
    15. Jean-Paul Azam, 2012. "Why suicide-terrorists get educated, and what to do about it," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 153(3), pages 357-373, December.
    16. Matthew A. Hanson, 2007. "The Economics of Roadside Bombs," Working Papers 68, Department of Economics, College of William and Mary.
    17. Daniel G. Arce & Dan Kovenock J. & Brian Roberson, 2009. "Suicide Terrorism and the Weakest Link," CESifo Working Paper Series 2753, CESifo Group Munich.
    18. Gries, Thomas & Haake, Claus-Jochen, 2016. "An Economic Theory of 'Destabilization War' '- Compromise for Peace versus Conventional, Guerilla, or Terrorist Warfare," Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145617, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    19. Matthew Hanson & Martin Schmidt, 2011. "The impact of Coalition offensive operations on the Iraqi insurgency," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(18), pages 2251-2265.
    20. Todd Sandler & Daniel G. Arce & Walter Enders, 2011. "An Evaluation of Interpol's Cooperative-Based Counterterrorism Linkages," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(1), pages 79-110.
    21. repec:kap:iaecre:v:17:y:2011:i:4:p:369-385 is not listed on IDEAS
    22. Tiberiu Dragu & Mattias Polborn, 2009. "Terrorism Prevention and Electoral Accountability," CESifo Working Paper Series 2864, CESifo Group Munich.
    23. Jennings, Colin, 2012. "Rationalising ‘Irrational’ Support for Political Violence," SIRE Discussion Papers 2012-87, Scottish Institute for Research in Economics (SIRE).
    24. Staffolani, Stefano & Valentini, Enzo, 2007. "Bequest taxation and efficient allocation of talents," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 648-672, July.
    25. Siqueira, Kevin & Sandler, Todd, 2007. "Terrorist backlash, terrorism mitigation, and policy delegation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(9), pages 1800-1815, September.

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