Improvised Explosive Devices research

AOAV’s research on Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs)

Since AOAV began the Explosive Violence Monitor Project in October 2010, over 164,000 casualties have been recorded from improvised explosive devices (IEDs), including more than 130,000 civilian casualties. Civilians have accounted for over 80% of the casualties from IEDs in the last nine years.

In addition to monitoring the direct impacts from IEDs, AOAV has examined the reverberating impacts, including the physical and mental health consequences for survivors, as well as the underlying causes of IED use and the efforts to prevent IED harm. Below you can find some of AOAV’s key reports examining IED harm.

IED reports:

Drawing on almost seven years of data, the IED Monitor examines the civilian harm caused by IEDs in this period.

The report also includes three further articles on IED use, harm and developments: The Islamic State’s Suicide IndustryThe evolution of Suicide Car Bombs examined, and Drones and the IED threat.

Understanding the rising cult of the suicide bomber (pdf)

AOAV investigates what makes individuals give their lives, and take others, for causes propagated by these transnational terrorist groups. It also looks at what effect such attacks have had on local and regional conflicts, as well as on the communities exposed to them.

Furthermore, the report proposes how states and other actors in the international community might seek to prevent their use and further escalation based on the reports’ findings.

Understanding the regional and transnational networks that facilitate IED use

This report examines the regional and transnational networks that facilitate IED use, aiming throughout to analyse and explain as well as to describe them.

The report focuses on networks linking the ‘Islamic State’ (IS); al-Qaeda (AQ) and its affiliates; the Taliban; al-Shabaab; and Boko Haram, as these are the major groups responsible for the worst IED violence.

Addressing the threat posed by IEDs: National, Regional and Global Initiatives (pdf)

AOAV investigates the Counter IED (C-IED) initiatives conducted around the world, with a particular focus on three of the most-impacted regions:the Middle East, North Africa and the Sahel.

The paper also identifies Afghanistan, Kenya, Somalia, Pakistan and Ukraine as five additional countries that are highly impacted by IEDs and therefore warrant examination.

UN IED Review Paper (pdf)

The report review the global impact of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and examines the implementation of preventative measures.

Tracking IED Harm (pdf)

Who is monitoring the impact and spread of improvised explosive devices?

AOAV analysed 18 organisations that are collecting data on IED incidents across the world, in order to determine limitations and best practice examples in the collection of such data, and to more fully understand who is doing what in this field.

Anatomy of a Suicide Bombing (pdf)

AOAV investigated the impact of the attack at the Moon Market in Lahore, Pakistan in December 2009.

Material Harm (pdf)

AOAV tracks the development of bomb-making techniques, and details some of the key components used in creating IEDs, including commercially available materials and materials that can typically be found around the home or in farming environments.

Blood on the Streets of Boston (pdf)

AOAV travelled to Boston and spoke to survivors, witnesses, first responders, public officials and health care professionals to determine the level of assistance provided to survivors.


For more information on this research, please contact Iain Overton, AOAV’s Executive Director on +44 (0) 7984 645 145 or at