Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Committee Member

Stephen M. Miller

Second Committee Member

Bradley S. Wimmer

Third Committee Member

Djeto Assane

Fourth Committee Member

John Puthenparackal

Number of Pages




The recent tightening of military budget constraints has called into question the feasibility of costly multilateral naval intervention used to combat maritime piracy off the eastern coast of Africa. Though past studies agree that the transformation of the Somali economy and government is crucial for a long-term solution to piracy in this part of the world, short to medium-run solutions are needed to bridge the gap. Such solutions should be fiscally sensible and serve as effective deterrents, as well as be applicable in addressing the problem of piracy and maritime armed robbery in other parts of the globe.

In this paper, I build upon the foundations laid in Mejia, Cariou, & Wolff (2009) and Mileski, Mejia, & Carchidi (2013) by examining the following question: given that a ship is engaged by pirates, what factors help shape the outcome of the confrontation? I find that observable action taken on the part of a ship's crew is extremely effective in decreasing the risk of a ship being successfully robbed or hijacked. There has yet to be a reported incident where pirates successfully hijacked a vessel that had a security team on board, and so though the effectiveness of security in this matter can be inferred, it cannot be empirically tested.

This may provide some guidance for policymakers; if naval intervention is to be scaled back, the encouragement and oversight of shipping companies' crew response procedures (and perhaps of onboard security measures) by international governments could pose a valid alternative.


Africa; Economics of crime; Maritime economics; Maritime terrorism; Piracy; Piracy – Economic aspects; Ships – Security measures


Economics | Law of the Sea | Legal Studies | Military and Veterans Studies

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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