Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

David A. Smith, PhD


The purpose of this research is to model the dynamic economic influences associated with an attack using a radiological dispersion device (RDD). Specifically, this thesis seeks to identify the variables associated with the total economic impact to the local community where the attack occurs and gain better insights into how local, state and federal entities can employ various policy decisions to bring the system under control within the first year of recovery. Of primary interest to the research is the problematic behavior of exponential economic impact and how the final accumulation of fiscal cost can be reduced. Using a system dynamics research method and the dynamic modeling software STELLA©, considerations such as controlling the media’s influence on public fear, consumer confidence, community resilience, and community recovery are incorporated with fiscal impact stocks such as business losses, tax revenue losses, and response costs. Once combined, the model uses historical examples of responses from the September 11 attacks, the Three Mile Island and Goiania, Brazil incidents, natural disasters, and recommendations from the latest Environmental Protection Agency Protective Action Guidance for response to radiological incidents to examine the effect on the impacted community’s recovery and total fiscal impact.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number