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THE ECONOMICS OF TERRORISM

Authors

  • MICHAEL D. INTRILIGATOR

    1. Intriligator: Professor of Economics, Political Science, and Public Policy, UCLA, Senior Fellow, The Milken Institute and The Gorbachev Foundation of North America. Phone 310-825-4144, Fax 310-394-8007, E-mail intriligator@econ.ucla.edu
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    • *

      Presidential Address to the Western Economic Association International Annual Conference, Vancouver, BC, June 30, 2009.


Abstract

This paper treats terrorism as an economic phenomenon—as a way to understand it and to control it. It uses the tools of substitution, innovation, and cycles and concludes by noting the importance of intelligence and that the most valuable approach to defeating terrorism is that of denying resources to the terrorists rather than attempting to protect assets at risk. It notes that we are probably not any safer than before the implementation of the post–9/11 strategies and emphasizes that new initiatives must be undertaken to prevent terrorist use of weapons of mass destruction.

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