A Department of Homeland Security Emeritus Center of Excellence led by the University of Maryland

Weapons and Tactics


Weapons and Tactics

Project Title Investigators Project Period
Terrorist Groups and Weapons of Mass Destruction Gary Ackerman, Jonathan Wilkenfeld, R. Karl Rethemeyer, Victor Asal July, 2005 to May, 2008
Terrorist Behavior and Societal Tolerance of Violence Risa Brooks July, 2012 to December, 2013
Terrorist and Extremist Organizations (TEO) Database Jonathan Wilkenfeld, R. Karl Rethemeyer July, 2012 to December, 2016
Terrorism and Targeted Violence in the United States Erin Miller, Michael Jensen September, 2020 to January, 2022
Program to Prepare Communities for Complex Coordinated Terrorist Attacks Erin Miller October, 2017 to August, 2019
Profiles of Incidents Involving CBRN and Non-state Actors (POICN) Database Markus Binder March, 2010 to June, 2018
More Bang for the Buck?: Examining the Effect of Technological Change on Terrorist Use of Weapons of Mass Destruction Gary Ackerman, Jeffrey Bale July, 2005 to September, 2009
Modeling Risk of Future Terrorist Attacks Gary LaFree, Laura Dugan May, 2005 to June, 2009
Key Dimensions in Understanding Terrorist Bomb Attacks Margaret Wilson June, 2008 to May, 2010
Guerilla Insurgency: The Springboard to Terrorism? Mark Lichbach June, 2008 to August, 2011
Global Terrorism Database (GTD) Acceleration Erin Miller January, 2019 to January, 2020
Global Terrorism Database (GTD) Erin Miller, Gary LaFree, Laura Dugan June, 2001 to October, 2022
Geospatial Analysis of Terror Finance Marcus A. Boyd July, 2015 to July, 2016
Empirical Analysis of IED Attacks Gary LaFree, Richard Legault June, 2008 to December, 2009
Dynamics of Terrorism and Counterterrorism Campaigns Gary Ackerman, Joseph Young, R. Karl Rethemeyer, Victor Asal July, 2014 to December, 2017
Dissuading Adversaries and their Radiological/Nuclear Pathways: Integrating Deterrence Theory and Analytics in the Global Nuclear Detection Architecture (GNDA) Amy Pate, Brandon Behlendorf, Gary Ackerman, John Sawyer, Steve Sin, Hamid Mohtadi, Marcus A. Boyd October, 2013 to September, 2018
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency SIGMA+ Thomas Guarrieri, Marcus A. Boyd, Steve Sin July, 2018 to April, 2020
Country Reports on Terrorism - Statistical Annex Gary LaFree, Erin Miller May, 2012 to May, 2018
Anatomizing Radiological and Nuclear Non-State Adversaries Gary Ackerman, Jeffrey Bale, R. Karl Rethemeyer June, 2012 to January, 2014
Advancing U.S. CWMD/CWMT Capabilities in Support of the SIGMA+ Program through Development of Anticipatory Human Social Systems Models and Adversary Weapon Selection Decision Processes Steve Sin, Thomas Guarrieri March, 2020 to March, 2022
Project Title Publication Date START Authors Publication Type
The Softest of Targets: A Study on Terrorist Target Selection July 2009 Rethemeyer, R. Karl; Asal, Victor Journal Article
The Psychology of Terrorist Hostage-Taking March 2003 Wilson, Margaret Book Chapter
The Provisional Irish Republican Army and the Development of Mortars March 2016 Ackerman, Gary Journal Article
The Drone Debate: A Primer on the U.S. Use of Unmanned Aircraft Outside Conventional Battlefields December 2015 Colon, Carlos Rafael Book
Testing a Rational Choice Model of Airline Hijackings November 2005 LaFree, Gary; Dugan, Laura Journal Article
Terrorist behavior in hostage taking: Policy issues and research directions November 2005 Wilson, Margaret Book Chapter
Terrorist Attacks Targeting Critical Infrastructure in the United States, 1970-2015 June 2016 Miller, Erin START Reports
Terrorist Attacks Involving Package Bombs, 1970 — 2017 October 2018 Miller, Erin; Distler, Michael Fact Sheet
Terrorism in Mali November 2015 Miller, Erin Fact Sheet
Terrorism in Belgium and Western Europe; Attacks against Transportation Targets; Coordinated Terrorist Attacks March 2016 Miller, Erin Background Report
Terrorism and the North Caucasus: An Overview April 2013 Johns, Mila Background Report
Temporal Sequencing, Incident Sophistication, and Terrorist Outcomes August 2016 Smith, Brent; Gruenewald, Jeff Research Brief
Strategic Terrorism: The Framework and Its Fallacies January 2007 Neumann, Peter Journal Article
START Annual Meeting 2016: Quick-Fire Presentation - Terrorism and Radicalization October 2016 Lemieux, Anthony; Koven, Barnett S.; Ackerman, Gary; LaFree, Gary; Ligon, Gina Scott; Satana, Nil; James, Patrick; Simi, Peter; Breiger, Ronald; Chermak, Steven Presentation
Simultaneous Attacks by Terrorist Organisations December 2013 Deloughery, Kathleen Journal Article
Ricin Letters Mailed to President and Senator April 2013 Ackerman, Gary; Pinson, Lauren; Johns, Mila Background Report
Research Highlight: Bombing and Arson Attacks by Environmental and Animal Rights Extremists in the United States, 1995-2010 May 2013 Freilich, Joshua; Chermak, Steven; Parkin, William Research Brief
Probabilistic Pathway Projection to Counter Foreign Fighters April 2016 Boyd, Marcus A. Research Brief
Nuclear Weapons and Existential Threats: Insights from a Comparative Analysis of Nuclear-Armed States October 2014 Asal, Victor Journal Article
Momin Khawaja: Mechanisms of Radicalization August 2016 McCauley, Clark; Moskalenko, Sophia START Reports
Modelling Terrorist Technology Transfer April 2019 Ackerman, Gary; Earnhardt, Rebecca (Becca) White Paper
Modeling Costly Learning and Counter-Learning in a Defender-Attacker Game with Private Defender Information September 2014 Zhuang, Jun Journal Article
Maritime Insurgency May 2020 Rethemeyer, R. Karl; Asal, Victor Journal Article
Making the Wrong Connection: The Determinants of Terrorist Targeting of Airplanes and Airports February 2010 Rethemeyer, R. Karl; Legault, Richard; Asal, Victor Conference Paper
Jihadists and WMD: a re-evaluation of the future threat October 2014 Ackerman, Gary Journal Article
Jihadists and Weapons of Mass Destruction November 2008 Ackerman, Gary Book
Islamic State Chemical Weapons: A Case Contained by its Context? March 2018 Tinsley, Herbert; Quigley, Jillian; Binder, Markus Journal Article
Investigating the Applicability of Situational Crime Prevention to the Public Mass Violence Context December 2019 Freilich, Joshua; Chermak, Steven Journal Article
Intersections of Illicit Trafficking and Counterfeit Parts Workshop January 2022 Boyd, Marcus A. Report
Integrated United States Security Database (IUSSD): Data on the Terrorist Attacks in the United States Homeland, 1970 to 2011 December 2012 Miller, Erin; LaFree, Gary; Dugan, Laura START Reports
Human and Social Forces in the Spread of the IED Threat: Innovation, Diffusion and Adaptation April 2009 Ackerman, Gary START Reports
How Community Ties Influence Terrorist Targeting of Civilians November 2013 Brooks, Risa Research Brief
Disrupting Terrorist Assassinations Through Situational Crime Prevention July 2017 Freilich, Joshua Journal Article
Developing An Empirical Understanding of Improvised Explosive Devices: A Social and Behavioral Science Perspective August 2009 LaFree, Gary; Legault, Richard START Reports
Correcting the Record: Civilians, Proportionality and the Jus ad Vim June 2017 Colon, Carlos Rafael Book Chapter
Common Sense or Gun Control? Political Communication and News Media Framing of Firearm Sale Background Checks after Newtown November 2015 Sell, Tara Journal Article
CBRN Activity and Attacks by Insurgent Organizations October 2015 Ackerman, Gary; Rethemeyer, R. Karl; Asal, Victor Research Brief
Catch Them Coming and Going: Probabilistic Pathway Projection to Counter Foreign Fighters March 2016 Boyd, Marcus A. START Reports
Bombings at the 2013 Boston Marathon April 2013 Miller, Erin; Smarick, Kathleen Background Report
Application of a Profile Similarity Methodology for Identifying Terrorist Groups That Use or Pursue CBRN Weapons September 2017 Ackerman, Gary; Milward, H. Brinton; Rethemeyer, R. Karl; Breiger, Ronald; Asal, Victor Book Chapter
Apparent intended lethality: Toward a model of intent to harm in terrorist bomb attacks April 2013 Wilson, Margaret Journal Article
Apparent Intended Lethality: Toward a Behavioral Model of Intention to Harm in Single Issue Bombing Campaigns September 2010 Wilson, Margaret START Reports
Analyzing Catastrophic Terrorist Events with Applications to the Food Industry January 2007 Mohtadi, Hamid Book Chapter
An Overview of Bombing and Arson Attacks by Environmental and Animal Rights Extremists in the United States, 1995-2010 April 2013 Freilich, Joshua; Chermak, Steven; Parkin, William START Reports
A Strategic Analysis of Violent Extremist Organizations in the United States Central Command Area of Responsibility March 2020 Ligon, Gina Scott White Paper
A Quantitative Overview of Biological Weapons: Identification, Characterization, and Attribution May 2008 Ackerman, Gary; Asal, Victor Book Chapter
START study leads to support for SLTT officials
START study assesses attacks by environmental and animal rights extremists
START seeking 2014 Outstanding Article Award nominations
START Researchers Present at American Political Science Association Annual Conference
START Researchers Featured in Journal of Homeland Security
START releases first Research Review
START Releases 2011 Research Review
START Newsletter: Violent hate crimes and lone-actor terrorism; Cultural values and terrorism; Al-Shabaab
START launches online course on terror-crime nexus and CBRN
START Investigators Participate in 2011 American Sociological Association Annual Conference
START director to lecture on contrasting nature of terrorism
START co-hosts workshop on the security of critical system supply chains
START Assesses Impact of 9/11
START Announces Fellowships for 2005-06
START Announces 2009-2010 Undergraduate Research Program Award Recipients
START adds third course to summer line-up
Scavenger hunt activity helps START team assess capability of mobile radiation detectors
Researcher analyzes how community ties impact terrorist groups’ targeting of civilians
Research Roundtable event features START researcher Brandon Behlendorf
Press Release: START Panel Addresses Key Questions in Terrorism
New START model forecasts the flow of foreign fighters
New Fall 2008 UMD Course: Innovation and Terrorist Tactics
Lone-actors fueled by grievance, personal crises, weapons use
Jeffrey Lewis discusses history and culture behind suicide bombings
Intern team authors peer-reviewed journal article on Hamas
Hegghammer explains variation in western jihadists
GRU team gives virtual talk on cartels for National Security Forum
Global Terrorism Database Data Files Now Available through Terrorism and Preparedness Data Resource Center
Exciting Winter Courses Now Offered ONLINE
Egle Murauskaite appears on virtual panel on military mobility in Europe
Discussion Point: The Prospective Military Power of Al Qaeda Affiliated Groups in the Syrian Conflict
Discussion Point: From the Caucasus to Boston and Beyond
Discussion Point: Black Swans and Burstiness—Countering Myths about Terrorism
Despite fewer attacks in Western world, global terrorism increasing
CALCE and START co-host Intersections of Illicit Trafficking and Counterfeit Parts Workshop
Background Information on Terrorism in India
Al-Qaida's fatal terrorism under Osama bin Laden
A closer look at the 2,600 terrorist attacks in US, 1970-2012
**START Releases 2010 Update to the Global Terrorism Database**
**Far-Right Attacks on U.S. Law Enforcement and Security Guards**
***Terrorist Attacks on Religious Figures, Religious Institutions, and Military Targets***
***Background on Terrorism and Public Opinion in Indonesia***
***Background Info: Moscow Subway Bombing***
Image Title Job Title Institution
Rebecca (Becca) Earnhardt

Presidential Scholar, Biodefense PhD Student

George Mason University
Prabhakar Misra Prabhakar Misra

Professor of Physics

Howard University
Nathan Meehan

Director of Research and Development, Second Sight Training Systems, LLC

Second Sight Training Systems, LLC
Laura Dugan Laura Dugan

Ralph Mershon Professor of Human Security and Professor of Sociology 

The Ohio State University
John Sawyer John Sawyer

Director of Strategic Corporate Research Relationships

University of Maryland
Jeff Gruenewald

Associate Professor and Director of the Terrorism Research Center, University of Arkansas

University of Arkansas
Herbert Tinsley

Analyst, Government Accountability Office

Gary Ackerman Gary Ackerman

Associate Professor, SUNY Albany

University at Albany, State University of New York
Erin MIller Erin Miller

GTD Program Manager, START

University of Maryland
Brandon Behlendorf Brandon Behlendorf

Assistant Professor, College of Emergency Preparedness, Homeland Security and Cybersecurity, SUNY Albany

University at Albany, State University of New York
Barnett Koven Barnett S. Koven

Data Science Manager, Deloitte Government & Public Services


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