A chemical plant protection game incorporating bounded rational attackers and distribution-free uncertainties

Laobing Zhang, Genserik Reniers, Bin Chen, Xiaogang Qiu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


The chemical industry has an important role in our modern society. Due to the existence of hazardous materials and possible extreme producing conditions, chemical facilities are also considered dangerous. Research has pointed out that a successful attack on chemical plants may cause mass casualties, in the United States. Game theory has been employed to improve the protection of chemical plants, and current literature on chemical plant protection games assume a ‘rational’ attacker. The present paper studies a game-theoretic model, which is played by a rational defender and a ‘bounded rational’ attacker, for improving chemical plant protection. The attacker modeled in this paper is assumed to play higher payoff strategies with higher probabilities, which is innovative from the current chemical security literature. Attackers in the current chemical plant protection games would always play the strategy with the highest payoff (probability of 100%). Distribution-free uncertainties on attacker's parameters are also integrated into the model. An algorithm for solving the game presented in this paper is also proposed. A case study reveals that although a bounded rational attacker would reduce the defender's expected payoff, the defender's equilibrium strategy from the present model is robust to different attacker behaviors.
Original languageEnglish
Article number104545
JournalJournal of Loss Prevention in the Process Industries
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Bounded rationality
  • Chemical plant protection
  • Distribution-free uncertainty
  • Game theory


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