Canetti, Daphna. Waismel-Manor, Israel, Cohen, Naor. Rapaport, Carmit (2012). What Does National Resilience Mean in a Democracy? Evidence from the United States and Israel.Armed Forces and Society.
Given various challenges to national security in democracies, such as terrorism and political violence, a growing need for reconceptualization of the term "resilience" emerges. The interface between national security and resilience is rooted in individuals’ perceptions and attitudes towards institutions and leadership. Therefore, in this article we suggest that political-psychological features form the basis of citizens’ perceived definitions of national resilience. By comparing national resilience definitions composed by citizens of two democratic countries facing national threats of war and terrorism, the US and Israel, we found that perceived threats, optimism, and public attitudes such as patriotism and trust in governmental institutions, are the most frequent components of the perceived national resilience. On the basis of these results, a reconceptualization of the term “national resilience” is presented. This can lead to validation of how resilience is measured and provide grounds for further examination of this concept in other democratic countries.