Every year, thousands of men, women and children fall into the hand of traffickers, in their own countries and abroad. Scholars and international organisations, even within the UN system itself, looked at human trafficking or trafficking in persons differently depending on whether it was seen as a form of modern-day slavery, illegal migration, forced migration, prostitution or human smuggling. Therefore it wasn’t until 15 november 2000 when the United Nations for the first time in international law defined human trafficking in the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children (the Trafficking Protocol also called the Palermo Protocol). The Trafficking Protocol supplements the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and entered into force on 25 december 2003.
According to the Trafficking Protocol human trafficking means “the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices similor to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs”. Since the adoption of the Trafficking Protocol a lot of states have enacted antitrafficking laws that generally reflect this broad definition, while international and regional organisations have adopted documents combating trafficking in persons.
This Research Guide is intended as a starting point for research on Human Trafficking. It provides the basic legal materials available in the Peace Palace Library, both in print and electronic format. Handbooks, leading articles, bibliographies, periodicals, serial publications and documents of interest are presented in the Selective Bibliography section. Links to the PPL Catalogue are inserted. The Library's systematic classification → Transnational crime and subject heading (keyword) Human Trafficking are instrumental for searching through the Catalogue. Special attention is given to our subscriptions on databases, e-journals, e-books and other electronic resources. Finally, this Research Guide features links to relevant websites and other online resources of particular interest.
- Bulut, U., Turkey: The Business of Refugee Smuggling, Sex Trafficking, Gatestone Institute, 3-4-2016.
- Carrera, S. and E. Guild, Irregular Migration, Trafficking and Smuggling of Human Beings: Policy Dilemmas in the EU, CEPS, 2016.
- Caulfield, T. (et al), "Trafficking in Human Beings for the Purpose of Organ Removal and the Ethical and Legal Obligations of Healthcare Providers", Transplantation Direct, February 2016, Volume 2, Issue 2.
- Erpelding, M., L’esclavage en droit international : aux origines de la relecture actuelle de la définition conventionnelle de 1926, Journal of the History of International Law, 17 (2015), pp. 170-220. (access via PPL)
- Esser, L.B. and C.E. Dettmeijer-Vermeulen, "The Prominent Role of National Judges in Interpreting the International Definition of Human Trafficking", The Anti-trafficking Review, Issue 6, 2016, pp. 91-105.
- HAART Research Series, Displacement, Violence and Vulnerability: Trafficking among Internally Displaced Persons in Kenya, March 2016."History of Slavery, Human Smuggling and Trafficking 1860-2010," in G. Bruinsma, Histories of Transnational Crime, Springer, 2015) [abstract] (ordered, not yet in collection)
- Hawke, A. and A. Raphael, Offenders on the move: Global study on sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourisme, May 2016
- Healy, C.,How are the war in Syria and the refugee crisis affecting human trafficking?, Policy Brief ICMPD, January 2016.
- Holmes, P. (et al), Establishing Trafficking in Human Beings for the Purpose of Organ Removal and Improving Cross-Border Collaboration in Criminal Cases: Recommendations, Transplantation Direct, February 2016, Volume 2, Issue 2.
- Howland, S., Learning to see: Child trafficking and the burden of public awareness, Blog, The Migrationist, 1-4-2016.
- ICMPD, Targeting Vulnerabilities: The Impact of the Syrian War and Refugee Situation on Trafficking in Persons - A Study of Syria, Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq, December 2015
- Ikeora, M., The Role of African Traditional Religion and 'Juju' in Human Trafficking: Implications for Anti-trafficking. Journal of International Women's Studies, 17, 2016, (1), 1-18.
- Justice Centre Hong Kong, Coming Clean: The Prevalence of Forced Labour and Human Trafficking for the Purpose of Forced Labour amongst Migrant Domestic Workers in Hong Kong, March 2016.
- Leary, M., 'Modern Day Slavery' - Implications of a Label, St. Louis University Law Journal, Vol. 60, 2016 / CUA Columbus School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2015-13
- Meshkovska,B. (et al.)(eds.), "Trafficking of Women for Sexual Exploitation in Europe: Prosecution, trials and their Impact", The Anti-Trafficking Review, Issue 6, 2016. pp. 71-90.
- Niewiarowska, K.B., A Global Study of Human Trafficking Legislation: Causes and Effects, International Relations Honors Thesis, New York University, Spring 2015.
- Radjenovic, A. and S. Voronova, The Gender Dimension of Human Trafficking, European Parliament, Brief, 10-02-2016.
- Reitano, T. and P. Tinto, Survive and advance: The economics of smuggling refugees and migrants into Europe, ISS Paper, No. 289, November 2015.
- Schloenhardt, A. and C. Craig, "Prosecutions of People Smugglers in Australia 2011-14," Sydney Law Review, vol. 38, no. 1 (March 2016), pp. 49-83.
- Siller, N., ‘Modern Slavery’, Does International Law Distinguish between Slavery, Enslavement and Trafficking?, Journal of International Criminal Justice, first published online, 22-01-2016.
- Stoyanova, V., Victims of Human Trafficking in the Asylum Procedure. A Legal Analysis of the Guarantees for 'Vulnerable Persons' under the Second Generation of EU Asylum Legislation, in C. Bauloz (et al)(eds.), Seeking Asylum in the European Union: Selected Protection Issues Raises by the Second Phase of the CEAS, Nijhoff, 2015.
- Türk, V., UNHCR, Keynote Address at Advanced Course on International Criminal Law, Special Focus: International Criminal Justice, Migration and Human Trafficking, The Hague, 30 May 2016.
- Ventura, I., The Rise of Human Trafficking in Central America, Law School Student Scholarship, Seton Hall, Paper 739, 2016.
- Centonze, A., and G. Tinebra (eds.), Il Traffico Internazionale di Persone, Milano, Giuffrè, 2004.
- Claude, M., N. LaViolette et R. Poulin (eds), Prostitution et traite des êtres humains, enjeux nationaux et internationaux, Ottawa, Editions l'Interligne, 2009.
- Gallagher, A., The International Law of Human Trafficking, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2010.
- Lee, M., Trafficking and Global Crime Control, London, Sage, 2010.
- Scarpa, S., Trafficking in Human Beings: Modern Slavery, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2008.
- Villacampa Estiarte, C., El Delito de Trata de Seres Humanos: una Incriminación Dictada desde el Derecho Internacional, Cizur Menor, Aranzadi, Thomson Reuters, 2011.
Books/Papers (different aspects of trafficking)
- Allain, J., Slavery in International Law: of Human Exploitation and Trafficking, Leiden, Nijhoff, 2012.
- Allain, J. (ed.), The Legal Understanding of Slavery: from the Historical to the Contemporary, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2012.
- Anker, C. van den, and I. van Liempt (eds.), Human Rights and Migration : Trafficking for Forced Labour, Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan, 2012.
- Brysk, A., and A. Choi-Fitzpatrick (eds.), From Human Trafficking to Human Rights : Reframing Contemporary Slavery, Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania Press, 2012.
- Decaux, E., Les Formes Contemporaines de l'Esclavage, Leiden, Nijhoff, 2009.
- Dols García, A., Voodoo, Witchcraft and Human Trafficking in Europe, UNHCR, New Issues in Refugee Research, Working Paper No. 263, 2013.
- Ford, M., L. Lyons and W. van Schendel, Labour Migration and Human Trafficking in Southeast Asia: Critical Perspectives, London, Routledge, 2012.
- Kempadoo, K. (ed.), Trafficking and Prostitution Reconsidered: New Perspectives on Migration, Sex Work, and Human Rights, Boulder, CO, Paradigm, 2012.
- Magliveras, K.D., Combating Trafficking in Persons: The Role and Action of International Organisations, Athens, Sakkoulas, Working Paper, Centre of International and European Economic Law, no. 6, 2007.
- OSCE, Office of the Special Representative and Co-ordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings, Research Paper on Trafficking in Human Beings for Domestic Servitude in the OSCE Region: Analysis and Challenges, Vienna, Austria, 2010.
- OSCE Office of the Special Representative and Co-ordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings in partnership with the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute of Human Rights and the Helen Bamber Foundation,Trafficking in Human Beings Amounting to Torture and other Forms of Ill-treatment,Occasional Paper Series no. 5 (June 2013).
- OSCE Office of the Special Representative and Co-ordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings,Trafficking in Human Beings for the Purpose of Organ Removal in the OSCE Region: Analysis and Findings, Occasional Paper Series no. 6 (July 2013).
- Pérez Alonso, E., Tráfico de Personas e Inmigración Clandestina: (un Estudio Sociológico, Internacional y Jurídico-Penal), Valencia, Tirant lo Blanch, 2008.
- Roth,V., Defining Human Trafficking and Identifying its Victims: A Study on the Impact and Future Challenges of International, European and Finnish Legal Responses to Prostitution-related Trafficking in Human Beings, Leiden, Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 2012.
- Segrave, M. (ed.), Human Trafficking, Farnham / Burlington, Ashgate, 2013.
- Shelley, L., Human Trafficking : a Global Perspective, New York, Cambridge University Press, 2010
- Tosun, L., La Traite des Etres Humains: Etude Normative, Grenoble, Université de Grenoble, 2011.
- Winterdyk, J. (et al.) (eds.), Human Trafficking: Exploring the International Nature, Concerns, and Complexities, Boca Raton, FL, CRC Press, 2012.
- Beyond Trafficking and Slavering Short Course, ("we have re-edited our publications from the past 18 months into the world’s first open access ‘e-syllabus’ on forced labour, trafficking, and slavery. With 167 contributions from 150 top academics and practitioners, this 900-page, eight-volume set is packed with insights from the some of the best and most progressive scholarship and activism currently available. We have made this free for download, as well as print and classroom ready, with the goal of reaching not only practitioners and students in the global north, but to also reach readers working in organisations and institutions unable to pay for expensive academic journal and subscription services.")
Periodicals, serial publications
- International Enforcement Law Reporter (access via Westlaw)
- IOM Global Eye on Human Trafficking
- Journal of Human Trafficking
- Journal of Trafficking and Human Exploitation (first issue expected to be published in 2016)
- The Anti-Trafficking Review
- The Protection Project Journal of Human Rights and Civil Society
- UNODC, Global Report on Trafficking in Persons 2014
- The Anti-Trafficking Review, Prosecuting Human Trafficking, Issue 6, May 2016.
- The Anti-Trafficking Review, Fifteen Years of the UN Trafficking Protocol, Issue 4, April 2015.
- Social Inclusion, Perspectives on Human Trafficking and Modern Forms of Slavery, 3 (2015), No. 1.
- The Annals of the American Academy of Political & Social Science, Human Trafficking: Recent Empirical Research, volume 653, may 2014.
- Crime, Law and Social Change, 56 (2011), No. 5 and 61 (2014), No. 2
- Semaine Juridique 87 (2013), No. 19-20.
- European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research, 18 (2012), No. 3
- Intercultural Human Rights Law Review, 1 (2006), 4 (2009), and 7 (2012)
- Northern Illinois University Law Review, 31 (2011), No. 3
- Trends in Organized Crime, 14 (2011), No. 2-3.
- Seattle Journal for Social Justice, 9 (2011), No. 2
- Michigan Journal of International Law, 33 (2011), No. 1
- Human Rights Review, 12 (2011), No. 3
- Criminology and Public Policy, 9 (2010), No. 2
- International Migration, 48 (2010), No. 4
- International Migration, 43 (2005), No. 1-2
- Brussels Declaration on Preventing and Combating Trafficking in Human Beings, 2002
- Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings, 2005
- European Commission, The EU rights of victims of trafficking in human beings, European Commission, 2013. The publication gives an
overview of relevant EU legislation applying to victims of human trafficking.
- EU Directive 2009/52 Providing for Minimum Standards on Sanctions and Measures against Employers of Illegally Staying Third-Country Nationals
- EU Directive 2002/90 Defining the Facilitation of Unauthorised Entry, Transit and Residence
- Council framework Decision of 28 November 2002 on the strengthening of the penal framework to prevent the facilitation of unauthorised entry, transit and residence (2002/946/JHA)
- EU Directive 2012/29 establishing Minimum Standards on the Rights, Support and Protection of Victims of Crime
- ILO Convention No. 29 concerning Forced or Compulsory Labour (1930)ILO - Protocol of 2014 to the Forced Labour Convention, 1930(2014)
- ILO Convention No. 105 concerning the Abolition of Forced Labour (1957)
- ILO Forced Labour (Supplementary Measures) Recommendation, 2014 (No. 203)
- League of Nations, Slavery Convention (1926)
- Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, Supplementing the United Nations Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime, United Nations, 2000
- United Nations Supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery, the Slave Trade, and Institutions and Practices Similar to Slavery (1956)
- Center for the Study of Democracy, Child trafficking among vulnerable Roma communities, CSD, Sofia, 2015.
- Council of Europe, Group of Experts on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings, 5th General Report, covering the period from 1 October 2014
to 31 December 2015, Council of Europe, March 2016.
- European Commission Staff Working Document Mid-term report on the implementation of
the EU strategy towards the eradication of trafficking in human beings, European Commission, COM (2014) 635 final, October 2014.
- European Commission, Commission to adopt first Report on progress in the fight against trafficking in human beings, 19-05-2016.
- European Commission, Study on case-law on trafficking for the purpose of labour exploitation, 2015.
- European Commission, Study on prevention initiatives on trafficking in human beings, 2015.
- European Parliament, Sexual exploitation and prostitution and its impact on gender equality, Policy Department C, January 2014.
- Europol, A modern response to modern slavery, April 2015.
- Europol Situation Report, Trafficking in Human Beings in the EU, February 2016.
- EUROPOL-INTERPOL Report on Migrant Smuggling Networks, EUROPOL & Interpol, May 2016.
- Eurostat Report on Trafficking in Human Beings, 2015.
- ICAT, Inter-Agency Coordination Group against Trafficking in Persons (a policy forum mandated by the UN General Assembly to improve coordination among UN agencies and other relevant international organizations to facilitate an holistic and comprehensive approach to preventing and combating trafficking in persons including protection and support for victims of trafficking), Chair's report, 2015
- IOM report: Adressing Human Trafficking and Eploitation in Times of Crisis, december 2015.
- Report of the Special Rapporteur on Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, UN Doc. No. A/HRC/32/41 (UN General Assembly, May 2016)
- TRACE, Handbook, Tracing Human Trafficking, 2016.
- United Nations Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons, General Assembly Resolution 64/293, 2010
- UNODC, Global Report on Trafficking in Persons, UNODC, 2014.
- UNODC, Abuse of a Position of Vulnerability and Other "Means" within the Definition of Trafficking in Persons, New York, UN, 2013.
- UNODC, The Concept of ‘Exploitation in the Trafficking in Persons Protocol, UNODC, Vienna, 2015
- Bruckert, C. and C. Parent, Trafficking in Human Beings and Organized Crime: A Literature Review, Royal Canadian Mounted Police, 2002.
- Gozdziak, E. and M.N. Bump, Data and Research on Human Trafficking: Bibliography of Research-Based Literature, Washington, Georgetown University, 2008.
- UNICRI Bibliography on Trafficking in Human Beings (all the material that has been collected for the preparation of specific projects developed by UNICRI's Counter-Trafficking Team and all the related documents received by the UNICRI Library since the year 2000).
Systematic classification → International criminal law
1. On the Law of "Pirate" Fishing and its Connection to Human Rights Violations and to Environmental Degradation - A Multi-National Disaster
Keywords: Illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, Human trafficking, Piracy, Fisheries,
2. An Empirical Study of Human Trafficking Law in Cameroon: Victims Rarely Seek Justice and Traffickers Are Not Held Liable
Keywords: Cameroon, Human trafficking, Criminal jurisdiction, Criminal law,
Dragiewicz, M. (ed.), Global Human Trafficking, Critical Issues and Contexts, London/New York, Routledge, 2015.View this title in our link resolver Plinklet
Human trafficking has moved from relative obscurity to a major area of research, policy and teaching over the past ten years. Research has sprung from criminology, public policy, women’s and gender studies, sociology, anthropology, and law, but has been somewhat hindered by the failure of scholars to engage beyond their own disciplines and favoured methodologies. Recent research has begun to improve efforts to understand the causes of the problem, the experiences of victims, policy efforts, and their consequences in specific cultural and historical contexts.
Global Human Trafficking: Critical issues and contexts foregrounds recent empirical work on human trafficking from an interdisciplinary, critical perspective. The collection includes classroom-friendly features, such as introductory chapters that provide essential background for understanding the trafficking literature, textboxes explaining key concepts, discussion questions for each chapter, and lists of additional resources, including films, websites, and additional readings for each chapter.
The authors include both eminent and emerging scholars from around the world, drawn from law, anthropology, criminology, sociology, cultural studies, and political science and the book will be useful for undergraduate and graduate courses in these areas, as well as for scholars interested in trafficking.
Elliott, J., The Role of Consent in Human Trafficking, London/New York, Routledge, Taylor and Francis Group, 2015.View this title in our link resolver Plinklet
Human trafficking is consistently featured on the global political agenda. This book examines the trafficking of adult female victims for sexual exploitation, and specifically the understanding of consent and its influence in the identification and treatment of trafficking victims.
Jessica Elliott argues that when applied to situations of human trafficking, migration and sexual exploitation, the notion of consent presents problems which current international laws are unable to address. Establishing the presence of 'coercion' and a lack of consent can be highly problematic, particularly in situations of human trafficking and exploitative prostitution; activities which may be deemed inherently coercive and problematically clandestine.
By examining legal definitions of human trafficking in international instruments and their domestic implementation in different countries, the book explores victimhood in the context of exploitative migration, and argues that no clear line can be drawn between those who have been smuggled, trafficked, or 'consensually trafficked' into a situation of exploitation. The book will be great use and interest to students and researchers of migration law, transnational criminal law, and gender studies.
Borg Jansson, D., Modern Slavery : A Comparative Study of the Definition of Trafficking in Persons, Leiden ; Boston : Brill Nijhoff, 2015.View this title in our link resolver Plinklet
In Modern Slavery – A Comparative Study of the Definition of Trafficking in Persons Dominika Borg Jansson discusses why, despite international anti-trafficking efforts, there are so few trafficking convictions worldwide. In an easily accessible language, the author explains why international legal harmonization in this area has been difficult. Making use of the concept of legal transplants, Dominika Borg Jansson compares experiences from Sweden, Poland and Russia offering insights into especially Russian legislation that are not widely available. The problems concerning the implementation of the international definition of trafficking are here divided into country-specific challenges and obstacles attributable to the original source. Jansson also addresses the effectiveness of criminalization of trafficking and offers suggestions on how future trafficking legislation might be framed.
- Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law, Human Trafficking, by John Ceron.
- Refworld: Trafficking in Human Beings. UNHCR's policy documents, guidelines and tools relevant to trafficking in human beings and international protection, case law, selected international and regional legal instruments, as well as non-treaty instruments, tools and resources documents.
- UNODC Global Database on Human Trafficking. The database contains details on the nationalities of victims and perpetrators, trafficking routes, verdicts and other information related to prosecuted cases from around the world.
Human Trafficking or Smuggling: Guidance Needed?
On the first of July this year the Netherlands are commemorating the 150th anniversary of the abolishment of slavery. Although slavery has officially been abolished, the modern slave trade, also called human trafficking, is still continuing, not only in the Netherlands but everywere. But what is human trafficking and what is the distinction between trafficking and human smuggling?Read more
- Anti-Slavery International
- ECPAT (group of NGOs against commercial sexual exploitation of children)
- Global Alliance Against Traffic in Women
- ICAT, a policy forum mandated by the UN General Assembly to improve coordination among UN agencies and other relevant international organizations to facilitate an holistic and comprehensive approach to preventing and combating trafficking in persons including protection and support for victims of trafficking.
- ILO Forced Labour, Human Trafficking and Slavery
- International Organization for Migration
- Interpol, Trafficking in Human Beings
- Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe
- United Nations Commission on Human Rights Special Rapporteur on Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children
- United Nations Human Rights Council Special Rapporteur on Contemporary Forms of Slavery
- United Nations Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking
- United Nations Intraregional Crime and Justice Research Institute, Human Trafficking
- United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, see also this joint initiative, Global action to prevent and address trafficking in persons and the smuggling of migrants.
- Council of Europe Anti-Trafficking Website; GRETA
- European Union External Action human trafficking policy
- European Union Policy against Human Trafficking
- ICMDB (International Centre for Migration Policy Development) Human Trafficking Competence Centre
- Centrum tegen Kinderhandel en Mensenhandel (CKM)
- CoMensha (zet zich in voor een beter leven voor slachtoffers van mensenhandel)
- Expertisecentrum Mensenhandel en Mensensmokkel
- Fairwork (bestrijdt en voorkomt moderne slavernij in Nederland)
- Fier (expertise- en behandelcentrum op het terrein van geweld in afhankelijkheidsrelaties)
- Nationaal Rapporteur Mensenhandel en Seksueel Geweld tegen Kinderen
- Stop de traffik Nederland
- Terre des Hommes
Research and academia
- Border Crossing Observatory: Trafficking and Labour Exploitation
- Child Trafficking Digital Library
- datACT (aims at strengthening data protection in anti-trafficking responses)
- Droit contre la traite (un centre de ressources et mise en réseau sur la traite des êtres humains)
- Florida State University Research Guide on Human Trafficking
- Forced Migration Online (currently under review; content no longer updated)
- The Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime
- HEUNI (The European Institute for Crime Prevention and Control, affiliated with the United Nations, human trafficking projects)
- Human Trafficking.org (a webresource for combating human trafficking; no recent updates)
- LexisNexis Human Trafficking Awareness Index
- Oklahoma City University LibGuide on Human Trafficking
- Open Democracy Beyond Trafficking and Slavery (an editorial partnership between openDemocracy and researchers who challenge both the empty sensationalism of mainstream media accounts of exploitation and domination, and the hollow, technocratic policy responses promoted by businesses and politicians)
- Polaris Project (an organization in the global fight against human trafficking and modern-day slavery)
- Technology and Human Trafficking Initiative (created to study the use of ICT in the international fight against human trafficking)
- TRACE (TRACE investigates the structure of the trafficking industry, the individuals that work within it and those that it exploits, including the structure of their relationships)
- University of Queensland, Human Trafficking Working Group.
- Wilkes Community College Research Guide on Human Trafficking