Crime and violent extremism thrive when illicit actors are able to tap into a steady stream of revenues—whether through smuggling, oil trafficking, kidnapping, or many other sources. Yet our understanding of these revenue streams and how illicit actors are able to secure and maintain them is far from complete. Using creative tools and data, Quy-Toan Do will discuss new findings on how revenue is created (or not) in three highly disparate cases of ongoing crime and violent extremism: the pirates of Somalia, the poachers of African elephants, and the radical Islamists of Daesh. While all are the result of government failures and generate large negative spillovers, the range of effective interventions is highly contingent on the revenue model present in each case. Do will conclude by examining the role of multilateral institutions in addressing the negative spillovers on world trade, biodiversity, and the generation of massive flows of displaced persons.
Last Updated: Mar 23, 2016