A Taxonomy of Terror - About the Effect of Different Kinds of Terror on Risk Perceptions
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Terrorism is an increasing problem; still, research systematically investigating the impact of varying kinds of terrorism is scarce. The present investigation uses hypothetical scenarios to look at effects of diverging sorts of terrorism on risk perceptions in a student- and a tourist sample. Two characteristics of terrorism were varied systematically: frequency (whether terrorism hits a destination where terrorism is frequent or infrequent) and degree of organization (whether terrorism is committed by an organization or by an isolated perpetrator). Results show that both variables affect the level of perceived risk. Results are also in line with prospect theory's [Kahneman, D., & Tversky, A. (1979). Prospect theory: An analysis of decision under risk. Econometrica, 47 (2), 263–291] predictions regarding changes in risk perceptions. Findings thus provide a taxonomy of how terror characteristics affect level of and changes in perceived risk. This taxonomy might possibly be useful for predicting tourists travel decisions and behaviour.