Interdisciplinary Program in Statistics, BIO5 Institute, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ 85721, USA.
Benchmark Analysis for Quantifying Urban Vulnerability to Terrorist Incidents
Article first published online: 11 DEC 2007
Volume 27, Issue 6, pages 1411–1425, December 2007
How to Cite
Piegorsch, W. W., Cutter, S. L. and Hardisty, F. (2007), Benchmark Analysis for Quantifying Urban Vulnerability to Terrorist Incidents. Risk Analysis, 27: 1411–1425. doi: 10.1111/j.1539-6924.2007.00977.x
- Issue published online: 11 DEC 2007
- Article first published online: 11 DEC 2007
- Benchmark index;
- complementary log-log model;
- homeland security;
- urban vulnerability analysis
We describe a quantitative methodology to characterize the vulnerability of U.S. urban centers to terrorist attack, using a place-based vulnerability index and a database of terrorist incidents and related human casualties. Via generalized linear statistical models, we study the relationships between vulnerability and terrorist events, and find that our place-based vulnerability metric significantly describes both terrorist incidence and occurrence of human casualties from terrorist events in these urban centers. We also introduce benchmark analytic technologies from applications in toxicological risk assessment to this social risk/vulnerability paradigm, and use these to distinguish levels of high and low urban vulnerability to terrorism. It is seen that the benchmark approach translates quite flexibly from its biological roots to this social scientific archetype.