The Chicago Project on Security and Threats (CPOST) describes itself as an "international security affairs research institute based at the University of Chicago."[1][2][3][4][5] Formerly known as the Chicago Project on Security and Terrorism, and the Chicago Project on Suicide Terrorism, it was founded in 2004 by Robert Pape, professor of political science at the University of Chicago and author of Dying to Win, a book about suicide terrorism.[1] It compiles, maintains and publishes the Database on Suicide Attacks, a comprehensive dataset of suicide terrorism around the world that covers attacks from 1974 to 2019.[6] CPOST frequently works closely with the United States government, particularly the Department of Defense.

Media coverage

The work of CPOST has been covered in The New York Times,[7][8] The Washington Post,[9] The Boston Globe,[10] Foreign Policy,[11] and ABC News.[12]

CPOST members have appeared on C-SPAN shows discussing terrorism[13] as well as on CNN.[14] CPOST recently released its first report titled "The American Face of ISIS" in partnership with the Australian Strategic Policy Institute.[15][16][17]


Pape et al. reported major differences in the numbers of suicide terrorist incidents by year between CPOST and the Global Terrorism Database (GTD). For 2008 and 2013 they reported the following:[18]

Pape's comparison of GTD and CPOST[19]
2007 359 521
2013 619 423
% change 72% -19%

Pape et al. quote GTD officials as claiming that their “researchers, past and present, have ensured that the entire database uses the same standards for inclusion and is as comprehensive as possible.” Pape et al. disagree, noting that the difference between the GTD and CPOST counts is easily explained by a change in GTD methodology that occurred 11/1/2011.[20] Meanwhile, they claim their CPOST methodology has been consistent since their first recorded incident in 1982. They conclude, “American policy makers and the public deserve the best data available on terrorism, one of the most important national security issues of our time.”[18]


  1. ^ a b "About". Chicago Project on Security and Threats. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  2. ^ "University of Chicago-Chicago Project on Security and Threats CPOST". Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  3. ^ Clowney, Caroline. "Chicago Project on Security and Terrorism". Global Terrorism Research Project, Haverford College. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  4. ^ Tinnes, Judith (2013). "230 Websites and Blogs for Terrorism Research". Perspectives on Terrorism. 7 (3). Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  5. ^ Freedman, Benjamin (2010). "Terrorism Research Centres: 100 Institutes, Programs and Organisations in the Field of Terrorism, Counter-Terrorism, Radicalisation and Asymmetric Warfare Studies". Perspectives on Terrorism. 4 (5). Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  6. ^ "Database on Suicide Attacks". Chicago Project on Security and Threats. Archived from the original on 2021-04-28. Retrieved April 27, 2021.
  7. ^ Pape, Robert A.; O'Rourke, Lindsey; McDermit, Jenna (March 30, 2010). "What Makes Chechen Women So Dangerous?". The New York Times. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  8. ^ Steven Lee Myers (May 2, 2010). "The 'Wanted Dead' Option in the War on Terror". The New York Times. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  9. ^ Pape, Robert (April 29, 2014). "A hotline to cool Asian crises". The Washington Post. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  10. ^ Pape, Robert (February 7, 2014). "Chechen rebels' complicated agenda". The Boston Globe. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  11. ^ Kozlowska, Hanna (January 22, 2014). "Meet the Female Terrorists Keeping Putin Up at Night". Foreign Policy. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  12. ^ Meek, James Gordon; Galli, Cindy; Ferran, Lee (October 22, 2013). "Sochi Olympic Security Concerns Loom in Wake of Russian Bus Bombing". ABC News. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  13. ^ "Chicago Project on Security and Terrorism". C-SPAN. Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  14. ^ Pape, Robert (March 7, 2014). "Why Western sanctions against Russia could inflame Ukraine crisis". Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  15. ^ "Trump's Travel Ban Misses the True Threat: Homegrown Terrorism". Foreign Policy. Retrieved 2017-02-08.
  16. ^ Pape, Robert; Decety, Jean; Ruby, Keven; Albanez Rivas, Alejandro; Jessen, Jens; Wegner, Caroline (2017-02-03). "The American face of ISIS". Retrieved April 27, 2021.
  17. ^ "Report: Trump Travel Ban Attacks Nonexistent Terrorism Problem". CBS Chicago. 2017-02-04. Retrieved 2017-02-08.
  18. ^ a b Pape, Robert; Ruby, Keven; Bauer, Vincent; Jenkins, Gentry (August 11, 2014), "How to fix the flaws in the Global Terrorism Database and why it matters", The New York Times, retrieved 2016-01-08
  19. ^ If the numbers in 2007 and 2013 are independent Poisson counts, then the GTD results show an increase of 8.3 standard deviations, while CPOST reports a 3.2 standard deviation decrease; both are statistically significant by virtually all commonly used criteria.
  20. ^ GTD Global Terrorism Database Codebook: Inclusion Criteria and Variables, University of Maryland, College Park, MD: National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START), June 2015, p. 4, archived from the original on 2015-07-12, retrieved 2015-11-28

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