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Aaron Mannes in 2013

Aaron Mannes (born 1970) is an American expert on evaluation of terrorist risk. He has been Director of Research at the Middle East Media Research Institute and a researcher at the Information and Network Dynamics Laboratory and the Laboratory for Computational Cultural Dynamics at the University of Maryland. In 2004 he published Profiles in Terror: A Guide to Middle East Terrorist Organizations.


Mannes earned a master's degree from St. John's College in Annapolis, Maryland.[1] In 2014 he completed a doctorate in Public Policy at the University of Maryland with a dissertation entitled "The Evolving National Security Role of the Vice President".[2][3]


From 1998 to 2001, Mannes was the Director of Research at the Middle East Media Research Institute.[4][5] From 2004 to 2007, he worked on semantic web analysis of terrorism-related issues at the Information and Network Dynamics Laboratory of the University of Maryland.[3][6] He then became a researcher at the Laboratory for Computational Cultural Dynamics within the university's Institute for Advanced Computer Studies,[4] where he has worked on computerized forecasts of terrorist activity,[7] such as work with V.S. Subrahmanian on predicting attacks by the Indian Mujahideen.[8]


In 2004 Mannes published Profiles in Terror, in which he profiled more than twenty terrorist organizations.[9] With V. S. Subrahmanian and others, he has co-written Computational Analysis of Terrorist Groups: Lashkar-e-Taiba (2012) and Indian Mujahideen: Computational Analysis and Public Policy (2013), and he wrote the chapter "Qualitative Analysis & Computational Techniques for the Counter-Terror Analyst" in Handbook of Computational Approaches to Counterterrorism (2013), edited by Subrahmanian. A 2008 article in the Journal of International Policy Solutions, "Testing the Snake Head Strategy: Does Killing or Capturing its Leaders Reduce a Terrorist Group's Activity?" has been cited as one of several quantitative studies in the first decade of the 21st century casting doubt on the usefulness of leadership decapitation as a counter-terrorism tactic.[10][11][12]


  1. ^ "About the Author", Profiles in Terror, archived at the Wayback Machine on May 24, 2005.
  2. ^ Aaron Mannes, "The Evolving National Security Role of the Vice President", PhD dissertation, University of Maryland, 2014.
  3. ^ a b "CISSM Forum: The Whole Equation: The Vice President as Advisor", University of Maryland School of Public Policy, November 2014.
  4. ^ a b Arena profile: Aaron Mannes", Politico, retrieved May 24, 2017.
  5. ^ Defence Journal, Volume 10, Issues 9-11, 2007, p. 63.
  6. ^ "MINDSWAP and Profiles in Terror", in Brandy E. King and Kathy Reinold, Finding the Concept, Not Just the Word: A Librarian's Guide to Ontologies and Semantics, Oxford: Chandos, 2008, ISBN 9781843343196, p. 188.
  7. ^ Jim Giles, "And here is tonight's conflict forecast...", New Scientist, March 15, 2008, doi:10.1016/S0262-4079(08)60668-5: "Aaron Mannes of the University of Maryland is also using the model to develop predictions for the coming year. ... [A]t the request of New Scientist he took a look at what the model says about the present violence in Gaza." (Payment required).
  8. ^ "Laboratory for Computational Cultural Dynamics" Archived 2017-05-12 at the Wayback Machine, University of Maryland Institute for Advanced Computer Studies, retrieved May 24, 2017.
  9. ^ "Muslim Sects and Militant Groups", Choice, Volume 45, Issues 1-3, 2007, pp. 50–53.
  10. ^ Steven J. Barela, Legitimacy and Drones: Investigating the Legality, Morality and Efficacy of UCAVs, London / New York: Routledge, Taylor & Francis, 2016, ISBN 9781472446879, p. 220.
  11. ^ Stephanie Carvin, "The Trouble with Targeted Killing", Security Studies, Volume 21, Issue 3, 2012, pp. 529–55, doi:10.1080/09636412.2012.706513: "[P]erhaps the most devastating evidence indicating that policies of targeted killing are ineffective come from a series of quantitative studies published in scholarly journals over the last decade, particularly Hafez and Hatfield, Jordan, Kaplan et al., and Aaron Mannes".
  12. ^ Arian Sharifi, "The Futility of Insurgent Leader Assassination", Ex-Patt Magazine of Foreign Affairs, Spring 2014, pp. 7–18.

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