Applying Cultural Models to Terrorist Organizations

Presentation Type


Academic Level

4-year school


Conference Room C

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Apr 13th, 10:00 AM Apr 13th, 11:15 AM

Applying Cultural Models to Terrorist Organizations

Conference Room C

Using Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions on terrorist organizations’ host countries, this study will empirically test whether cultural dimensions can predict terrorist structural hierarchy. We aim to bridge the research gap in cross-cultural examinations of terrorist structures. The Big, Allied and Dangerous (BAAD) database from the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism provides vetted dossiers for over 100 terrorist organizations, which will serve as the foundation for our hierarchical ratings. Raters will systematically evaluate the hierarchical structure of active terrorist organizations, post-September 11th, on an ordinal scale. Hofstede’s dimensional model categorizes countries on six cultural dimensions from 0 to 100. We will run multiple regressions to identify the dimension(s) that significantly predict hierarchical structure, while controlling for confounding factors such as GDP per capita, literacy rate, etc. Specifically, our predictor variables are the cultural dimensions and our predicted variables are our hierarchical ratings. By isolating cultural constructs that predict terrorist structure, this study hopes to provide insight into the type of hierarchy distinct cultures prefer.