Victimization from terrorist attacks: Randomness or routine activities?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study tackles the as yet unaddressed question of the various types of factors related to victims of terrorism. We have explored core assumptions of terrorism and victimization theories by empirically testing both the randomness and the lifestyle-exposure theories. Specifically, we looked at how characteristics of victims of suicide bombings differ from the characteristics of those who have been casualties of other types of terrorism. Findings obtained via logistic regressions clearly refute the randomness hypothesis that the risk of victimization from terrorism is similar across all segments of society. Furthermore, findings indicate that victimization from suicide vis-à-vis other types of terrorism is related to the basics of lifestyle-exposure theories.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)485-501
Number of pages17
JournalTerrorism and Political Violence
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2006

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Daphna Canetti-Nisim is a Visiting Professor at the Helen Kellogg Institute, the University of Notre Dame and an Assistant Professor at the School of Political Science, the University of Haifa. Gustavo Mesch is an Academic Visitor, Oxford Internet Institute, a Senior Lecturer at the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, and a Senior Research Associate, Minerva Center for Youth Studies, the University of Haifa. Ami Pedahzur is an Associate Professor at the Department of Government, the University of Texas at Austin. This research was made possible in part by the support of the National Security Studies Center, the University of Haifa. We thank Shai Bermanis, the anonymous reviewers, and the editor of Terrorism and Political Violence for their valuable support and comments.


  • Lifestyle-exposure
  • Randomness
  • Routine activities
  • Terrorism
  • Victimization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Safety Research
  • Political Science and International Relations


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