A Year of terror

A Year of terror

Organisation: Visual Assessment (Singapore)

Publication Date: 04/10/2017

Size of team/newsroom:small


At the time of this publication in February 2017, the world witnessed another terrorist attack in France. At that moment, the Louvre attack was the latest in a series of continued terror assaults over the last two years. However, the year 2016 was a particularly deadly as there were about 4.5 times the number of terrorist attacks, compared with 2015. Because of this unprecedented wave of terror, the search for political solutions is a priority in the diplomatic and military agenda of most countries. Nevertheless, the attacks do not seem to diminish. In fact, there were already around 160 terrorist attacks in January 2017. The question on how to prevent the next attack remains. In the political context, and as long as there are wars, it is unlikely that terrorism will stop being part of everyday news. In the financial one, all the costly efforts of complying with anti-terror financing regulations and anti-money laundering have returned very few tangible results. Perhaps the answer is simply that terrorism uses informal routes to finance their attacks or maybe that all these attacks are just inexpensive. 

What makes this project innovative? What was its impact?

This work is a comprehensive summary of all 2016 attacks month by month, comparing them with the monthly total of the previous year. It also clearly shows that despite the many diplomatic efforts and the increase of security at all levels, terrorism is on the raise. Some observers fear that the migrant and refugee crisis weaken the security situation, which would result in an increased threat of terrorism this year, especially across Europe. In fact, 2017 does not appear to be improving with high-profile attacks on major cities such as Istanbul, Paris and Stockholm. However, terrorism is not only a topic of interest in the political arena, but it is also in the financial sector. While controls have significantly increased, compliance is more and more strict and banks nowadays often get fined for lax controls on money-laundering, terrorism seems to flourish. So, this work could be used as a support material for policy discussion.

Technologies used for this project:

Adobe Suite, Excel and R.
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