Does Homeland Security Work? Evaluating DHS’s Efforts to Make Us Safer
Risk management is a mantra in the Department of Homeland Security but little more. Risk management means more than sending grants to areas where the risk of terrorism is greatest. It means honestly assessing danger rather than using worst-case scenarios as a basis for policy. It means creating ways to evaluate whether homeland security policies succeed, eliminating those that do not, and shifting funds to those that do. Current U.S. homeland security policy does not achieve these basic tasks. This forum will discuss ways to remedy that failure. Benjamin Friedman will explain what homeland security policymakers can learn from efforts to overcome public demand for overreaction to threats in defense and regulatory policy. John Mueller will discuss his recent research into counterterrorism policy, focusing on how to use cost-benefit analysis to evaluate homeland security programs.