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Phillips B.J.,Center for Research and Teaching in Economics
Terrorism and Political Violence | Year: 2015

Scholars, politicians, and pundits increasingly suggest lone wolf terrorists are substantial threats, but we know little about how dangerous these actors are—especially relative to other terrorist actors. How deadly are lone actor terrorists? A growing body of empirical research focuses on terrorist organizations, but similar work on lone actors is sparse. Furthermore, attempts to explicitly compare these or other types of terrorist actors are almost non-existent. This article considers theoretical arguments for why lone wolves ought to be especially lethal. However, it presents an argument for why terrorist groups should generally be more lethal. This argument is conditional upon the environment in which actors operate. Lone wolves should only be more deadly in states with especially strong counterterrorism capacity. The article uses data on terrorist attacks in fifteen developed countries, 1970–2010, to compare the lethality of terrorist acts. Around the world, attacks by organizations tend to be far more lethal than attacks by other actors. In the United States, however, lone wolves are generally the more lethal terrorist actors. This is argued to be because the robust counterterrorism capacity makes organized terrorism more difficult to accomplish. 2015 Copyright © Taylor & Francis Group, LLC Source


Asal V.,University at Albany | Phillips B.J.,Center for Research and Teaching in Economics | Deloughery K.,University at Albany
Terrorism and Political Violence | Year: 2012

Political organizations claim they are serving the interests of their constituents-but being involved in the drug trade does not seem to support those claims. Why would political organizations sell drugs then? Most often the question of why organizations engage in the drug trade has been explored in the context of organizations that are either criminal or violent, thus leaving a large hole in the literature about how violence and legality intersect with other exploratory factors. We explore this issue more fully by looking at both violent and nonviolent organizations using the Middle East Minorities at Risk Organizational Behavior dataset, which has data on over 100 ethnopolitical organizations in the Middle East. Very few of these organizations are involved in the drug trade and yet all of those are engaged in violence at the same time. We explore what factors, other than violence, make this rare behavior for political organizations more likely. © 2012 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. Source


Phillips B.J.,Center for Research and Teaching in Economics
Terrorism and Political Violence | Year: 2015

Researchers increasingly conduct quantitative studies of terrorist groups, which is an important advance in the literature. However, there has been little discussion of what constitutes a “terrorist group,” regarding conceptualization or measurement. Many studies of terrorist groups do not define the term, and among those that do, definitions vary considerably. The lack of clarity leads to conceptual confusion as well as sample selection issues, which can affect inferences. To address these issues, this article offers an in-depth analysis of the term and its use. It explores definitions in the literature, and then discusses different samples used. Empirically, the article demonstrates how sample selection can affect variable values. It also shows that a non-representative sample, such as the U.S. Foreign Terrorist Organization list, can lead to inaccurate generalizations. Ultimately, I present a straightforward “inclusive” definition, and argue for its practicality. Other suggestions are made for a more effective and cohesive research program. © 2015, Copyright © Taylor & Francis Group, LLC. Source


Grassi S.,University of Kent | Grassi S.,University of Aarhus | Hillebrand E.,University of Aarhus | Ventosa-Santaularia D.,Center for Research and Teaching in Economics
Dynamics of Atmospheres and Oceans | Year: 2013

We propose a semi-empirical model for the relation between global mean surface temperature and global sea-levels. In contradistinction to earlier approaches to this problem, the model allows for valid statistical inference and joint estimation of trend components and interaction term of temperature and sea-level. Estimation of the model on the data set used in Rahmstorf (2007) yields a proportionality coefficient of 4.6. mm/year per °C at a one-sided significance level of 7.6 percent or higher. Long-term simulations of the model result in a two-sided 90-percent confidence interval for the sea-level rise in the year 2100 of [15. cm, 150. cm] above the 1990 level. This is a wider margin of error than was reported in the previous literature, and it reflects the substantial uncertainty in relating two trending time series. © 2013 Elsevier B.V. Source


Mariscal Aviles J.,Center for Research and Teaching in Economics | Benitez Larghi S.,CONICET | Benitez Larghi S.,National University of La Plata | Benitez Larghi S.,Institute for Research in Humanities and Social science IdIHCS | Martinez Aguayo M.A.,Center for Research and Teaching in Economics
Telecommunications Policy | Year: 2016

This paper seeks to contribute to the debate on the impact of the adoption of information technologies (ICT) in poverty reduction by understanding how the poor obtain, share and use ICT on their everyday life - what we call the informational lives of the poor. It identifies the opportunities and challenges regarding ICT adoption in three rural communities with different levels of marginalization and connectivity in Mexico. Using "before and after" studies we attempt to identify and understand mechanisms through which ICT (and broadband, in particular), may have an impact on poverty alleviation.Using a combination of the Capabilities Approach and Livelihoods Perspective, this research shows that mobile broadband access (as opposed to fixed shared access) and effective training through the role of infomediaries enables low-income communities to develop new skills, to engage in new practices and to find useful applications for old and new abilities, needs and interests. A specific finding that has not received attention in the literature is the productive role of immediate family members as infomediaries; the weight of family networks plays a crucial role in learning about ICTs. These networks fuel a sense of confidence required to handle knowledge and practices that are initially alien in this sector.We found that ICT adoption changes the pattern of information seeking and enhances informational capabilities and existing assets of low-income communities. Through our control case, that did not have any connectivity, we identified the high transaction cost people face as well as the business opportunities the digitally excluded forego. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. Source

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