The application of statistical relational learning to a database of criminal and terrorist activity
April 29, 2010
We apply statistical relational learning to a database of criminal and terrorist activity to predict attributes and event outcomes. The database stems from a collection of news articles and court records which are carefully annotated with a variety of variables, including categorical and continuous fields. Manual analysis of this data can help inform decision makers seeking to curb violent activity within a region. We use this data to build relational models from historical data to predict attributes of groups, individuals, or events. Our first example involves predicting social network roles within a group under a variety of different data conditions. Collective classification can be used to boost the accuracy under data poor conditions. Additionally, we were able to predict the outcome of hostage negotiations using models trained on previous kidnapping events. The overall framework and techniques described here are flexible enough to be used to predict a variety of variables. Such predictions could be used as input to a more complex system to recognize intent of terrorist groups or as input to inform human decision makers.