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International Terrorism, Political Instability and the Escalation Effect

What are the main causes of international terrorism? The lessons from the surge of academic research that followed 9/11 remain elusive. The careful investigation of the relative roles of economic and political conditions did little to change the fact that existing econometric estimates diverge in size, sign and significance. In this paper we present a new rationale (the escalation effect) stressing domestic political instability as the main reason for international terrorism. Econometric evidence from a panel of more than 130 countries (yearly from 1968 to 2003) shows this to be a much more promising avenue for future research than the available alternatives.

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Paper provided by KOF Swiss Economic Institute, ETH Zurich in its series KOF Working papers with number 09-220.

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Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:kof:wpskof:09-220
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  1. Bruno S. Frey & Simon Luechinger, . "How to Fight Terrorism: Alternatives to Deterrence," IEW - Working Papers 137, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  2. Bruno S. Frey & Simon Luechinger & Alois Stutzer, 2004. "Calculating Tragedy: Assessing the Costs of Terrorism," CREMA Working Paper Series 2004-23, Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts (CREMA).
  3. Alan B. Krueger & Jitka Maleckova, 2003. "Education, Poverty and Terrorism: Is There a Causal Connection?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 17(4), pages 119-144, Fall.
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  8. Llussá, Fernanda & Tavares, José, 2007. "Economics and Terrorism: What We Know, What We Should Know and the Data We Need," CEPR Discussion Papers 6509, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Berman, Eli & Laitin, David D., 2008. "Religion, terrorism and public goods: Testing the club model," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(10-11), pages 1942-1967, October.
  10. Axel Dreher & Justina A.V. Fischer, 2008. "Decentralization as a disincentive for transnational terror? An empirical test," University of St. Gallen Department of Economics working paper series 2008 2008-01, Department of Economics, University of St. Gallen.
  11. Dreher, Axel & Gassebner, Martin, 2008. "Does political proximity to the U.S. cause terror?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 99(1), pages 27-29, April.
  12. Enders, Walter, 2007. "Terrorism: An Empirical Analysis," Handbook of Defense Economics, Elsevier.
  13. Ana Bela Santos Bravo & Carlos Manuel Mendes Dias, 2006. "An Empirical Analysis Of Terrorism: Deprivation, Islamism And Geopolitical Factors," Defence and Peace Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 17(4), pages 329-341.
  14. Alberto Abadie, 2004. "Poverty, Political Freedom, and the Roots of Terrorism," NBER Working Papers 10859, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  15. Paul Collier & Anke Hoeffler, 2004. "Greed and Grievance in Civil War," Development and Comp Systems 0409007, EconWPA.
  16. Chamberlain, Gary, 1980. "Analysis of Covariance with Qualitative Data," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(1), pages 225-38, January.
  17. Jean-Paul Azam & Alexandra Delacroix, 2006. "Aid and the Delegated Fight Against Terrorism," Review of Development Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(2), pages 330-344, 05.
  18. Blomberg, S. Brock & Hess, Gregory D. & Weerapana, Akila, 2004. "Economic conditions and terrorism," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 463-478, June.
  19. Guimarães, Paulo, 2008. "The fixed effects negative binomial model revisited," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 99(1), pages 63-66, April.
  20. Atin Basuchoudhary & William Shughart, 2010. "On Ethnic Conflict And The Origins Of Transnational Terrorism," Defence and Peace Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(1), pages 65-87.
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