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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter September 23, 2011

Preventing Mass Killings: Determining the Optimal Allocation of Security Resources between Crowded Targets

Sunniva F. Meyer

This paper (1) translates theoretical notions of optimal security allocations into concrete policy recommendations and (2) compares these recommendations with actual transport security policy and transport security allocations in Norway. I argue that when protecting against mass-casualty attacks, priority should be given to potential targets that would suffer high casualties and that have a high number of foreign travelers, low employee density, many hiding places, many entry/exit points, high passenger anonymity, and high system fragility. Interviews with Norwegian transport authorities suggest that budget constraints and international commitments, rather than concerns for efficiency at the aggregate (national) level, determine the authorities’ allocation of security resources.

Published Online: 2011-9-23

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