Presentation Title

Applying Historiometry to Terrorist Organizations

Advisor Information

Gina Ligon

Location

Milo Bail Student Center Ballroom

Presentation Type

Poster

Start Date

8-3-2013 9:00 AM

End Date

8-3-2013 12:00 PM

Abstract

Historiometry is a methodological strategy in which historical, qualitative information is translated into quantitative indices. Historiometry can be used to study low base-rate, but important, behaviors. Examples, best practices, limitations, and implications of this technique with regard to terrorist organizational contexts are discussed and reviewed. The application of historiometry to study terrorist groups allows for the examination of groups that are otherwise largely secretive. Historical documentation of rare events such as egregious attacks (e.g., al-Qaeda and 9/11), creative implementation (e.g., Aum and the Tokyo subway gassing), and overall effectiveness of plans (i.e, the attack was completed as planned) afford empirical examinations much different than typical organizational studies. The purpose of this poster is to describe a methodological approach, historiometry (i.e., translating multiple historical records into quantitative indices about terrorist organizational phenomena), explore its advantages and disadvantages, and describe how that methodology can offer an understanding of terrorist organizational behaviors and contexts via extreme behaviors.

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Mar 8th, 9:00 AM Mar 8th, 12:00 PM

Applying Historiometry to Terrorist Organizations

Milo Bail Student Center Ballroom

Historiometry is a methodological strategy in which historical, qualitative information is translated into quantitative indices. Historiometry can be used to study low base-rate, but important, behaviors. Examples, best practices, limitations, and implications of this technique with regard to terrorist organizational contexts are discussed and reviewed. The application of historiometry to study terrorist groups allows for the examination of groups that are otherwise largely secretive. Historical documentation of rare events such as egregious attacks (e.g., al-Qaeda and 9/11), creative implementation (e.g., Aum and the Tokyo subway gassing), and overall effectiveness of plans (i.e, the attack was completed as planned) afford empirical examinations much different than typical organizational studies. The purpose of this poster is to describe a methodological approach, historiometry (i.e., translating multiple historical records into quantitative indices about terrorist organizational phenomena), explore its advantages and disadvantages, and describe how that methodology can offer an understanding of terrorist organizational behaviors and contexts via extreme behaviors.