Our Grants

An Analytic Network Process Model to Estimate the Benefits, Opportunities, Costs, and Risks of Gun Policies and Violence Prevention Interventions for Legal Firearm Users


This proposal aims to develop an analytic network process (ANP) model to collect information and measure the effect of gun polices and violence prevention intervention, on the interests of gun owners and users of guns. The approach can easily incorporate new information and changes in public sentiment.




This project puts forth a methodology for the collection and assembling of data that can be used to estimate the harms and benefits of various gun control policies to gun owners. The method we propose is feasible to implement with existing knowledge of the impact of gun control laws, and when data are not available it can incorporate expert judgment. Because gun control laws involve intangibles and hence not all impacts of a law are measurable in a quantitative scale, we need to compare the benefits, opportunities, costs, and risks (BOCR) created by each gun control law in relative terms. Thus, we need relative measurement as in the analytic network process. The analytic hierarchy process (AHP) and the ANP model use pairwise comparisons to construct relative scales for both tangibles and intangibles. The gun control laws are then evaluated in terms of their BOCR scores.

Investigator Bios

  • Luis G. Vargas, is a professor of operations, decision science, and artificial intelligenceat the University of Pittsburgh. His research is focused on decision theory, practical applications of the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP), artificial intelligence in manufacturing, the use of artificial intelligence techniques for scheduling, measurement of resource utilization, group decision making, Bayesian networks, and forecasting.
  • Amos N. Guiora is a professor of law at the S.J. Quinney College of Law, University of Utah. Guiora teaches Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, International Law, Global Perspectives on Counterterrorism and Religion and Terrorism. His book The Crime of Complicity: The Bystander in the Holocaust, helped build a foundation for legislation introduced in the 2018, 2019 and 2020 Utah Legislative Sessions by Representative Brian King that would require Utah citizens to dial 911 when others are suffering, or are threatened with serious bodily injury.
  • Marcel C. Minutolo, Ph.D., is a professor of strategic management in the School of Business at Robert Morris University. Minutolo teaches strategic management, Amazon Cloud Computing, and decisions sciences. He is an Amazon Accredited Instructor and Amazon Web Services Cloud Practitioner Certified. His work has focused on the application of various decision support models for improved performance in decision outcomes. Much of his work has employed various forms of Artificial Neural Networks and the Analytic Hierarchy Process.
Grant Amount
Award Type
The International Center for Conflict Resolution (IC4CR), The Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business, University of Pittsburgh
Luis G. Vargas, professor or operations, decision science, and artificial intelligence, University of Pittsburgh; Amos N. Guiora, professor of law, University of Utah; and Marcel C. Minutolo, professor of strategic management at Robert Morris University.
Year Awarded
Focus Areas
Policy Analysis