Contagion theory of violence

Check out this provocative open-access paper titled Contagion in Mass Killings and School Shootings (Towers, et al., 2015). Here is an extended excerpt (footnotes omitted): “We fit a mathematical contagion model to the data sets, with model terms that take into account temporal trends due to possible exogenous non-contagion factors, and a contagion term that takes into account the fact that a school shooting or mass murder may temporarily increase the probability of a similar event in the immediate future. We model the contagion process assuming an exponential decay in contagiousness after an event. Contagion models have been applied to financial markets, spread of YouTube videos on social networks, burglary, civilian deaths in Iraq, and terrorist attacks, but this is the first instance in which these models have been applied in the context of mass murders and school shootings.” Hat tip: Tyler Cowen, via Marginal Revolution.

Credit: Towers, et al.


About F. E. Guerra-Pujol

When I’m not blogging, I am a business law professor at the University of Central Florida.
This entry was posted in Bayesian Reasoning, Mathematics, Probability. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Contagion theory of violence

  1. Craig says:

    Thank you for sharing this.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s