Insight: People use their gut to determine who is a threat in public spaces.
I created a questionnaire and spoke with 6 people about how they determine someone else in a public space to be a threat. Interviewees varied in cultural and economic background, and yet their answers to the question were resoundingly similar. They determine someone to be a threat based on "a feeling".
I learned that people use their intuition, or heuristics, which is grounded in their skewed exposures to people, cultures, and environments. Upon further research, I discovered that a person is likely to trust someone who reminds them of someone they've trusted in their past.
This means that an encounter with someone from a different culture might trigger feelings of suspicion.
Subject matter expert interviews
I spoke with 16 experts in counterterrorism and public spaces about how to make public spaces safer to defend against terrorism.
Counterterrorism strategy considers people to be threats rather than resources
Social cohesion is the best counterterrorism strategy