skip navigation

Add your conference to our Justice Events calendar


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the NCJRS Abstracts Database. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.

  NCJ Number: NCJ 242178    
  Title: Research on Terrorism and Countering Terrorism (From Crime and Justice: A Review of Research, Volume 38, P 413-477, 2009, Michael Tonry, ed., - See NCJ-242171)
  Author(s): Gary LaFree ; Laura Dugan
  Date Published: 2009
  Page Count: 65
  Annotation: This essay discusses criminology-related literature on terrorism and presents data on characteristics of worldwide terrorism since 1970.
  Abstract: Social and behavioral research on terrorism has expanded dramatically. However, theoretical work that incorporates terrorism and collection of valid data on it has lagged behind theoretical work on other criminological subjects. Theorizing has been dominated by deterrence perspectives. Threats of severe consequences for terrorist acts in general show little promise, but there is evidence that increasing the certainty of consequences works in some situations. Research on terrorism will be improved if it moves beyond deterrence to include concepts drawn from legitimacy, strain, and situational perspectives. Limitations of traditional criminology data sources for studying terrorism have encouraged the development of open-source-event databases. The most comprehensive, created by combining the Global Terrorism Database with RAND-MIPT data, documents more than 77,000 terrorist incidents from 1970 to 2006. Attacks peaked in the early 1990s and then declined substantially until 9/11. They have since substantially increased. The regional concentration of terrorism has moved from Western Europe in the 1970s, to Latin America in the 1980s, to the Middle East and Persian Gulf in the 21st century. Despite the enormous resources devoted to countering terrorism, surprisingly little empirical information is available on which strategies are most effective. (Published Abstract)
  Main Term(s): Terrorism/Mass Violence
  Index Term(s): Counter-terrorism tactics ; International terrorism ; Antiterrorist laws ; Domestic terrorism ; Police response to terrorism ; Terrorism causes ; Counter-terrorism intelligence
  Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
US Department of Justice
Office of Justice Programs
United States of America

US Dept of Homeland Security
United States of America

National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Reponses to Terrorism (START)
United States of America
  Grant Number: 2005-IJ-CX-0002;N00140510629
  Sale Source: University of Chicago Press
1427 East 60th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
United States of America
  Publisher URL: 
  Type: Issue Overview
  Country: United States of America
  Language: English
  To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.