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World Bank, Washington, DC
Middle East and North Africa | Middle East | North Africa
2016-06-14T20:20:12Z | 2016-06-14T20:20:12Z | 2016-06

What are the common characteristics among radicalized individuals, willing to justify attacks targeting civilians? Drawing on information on attitudes toward extreme violence and other characteristics of 30,787 individuals from 27 developing countries around the world, and employing a variety of econometric techniques, this paper identifies the partial correlates of extremism. The results suggest that the typical extremist who supports attacks against civilians is more likely to be young, unemployed and struggling to make ends meet, relatively uneducated, and not as religious as others, but more willing to sacrifice own life for his or her beliefs. Gender and marital status are not found to explain significantly the individual-level variation in attitudes toward extremism. Although these results may vary in magnitude and significance across countries and geographic regions, they are robust to various sensitivity analyses.

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