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Transnational Crime: The Exploiting and the Exploited Chimera

Journal: Interdisciplinary Political Studies
Edition: Ferbruary (Special Edition)
Deadline for submitting full papers: Oct. 14, 2011

Description of IdPS' Special Edition

Interdisciplinary contributions are welcome to renew the debate over the Achilles’ heel of studies on transnational crime—the conceptual clarity of the concept. The catchy concept of transnational crime alarms the international community about the dangers of criminal processes that not a single state alone can effectively respond to. However, the term does little to capture the variation in group size, organization, or scale of operations that matter in seeking to understand the extent and nature of the challenges posed by transnational criminal processes. The contributions should address the debate over criminal processes constituting transnational crime and the fundamental distinctions between illegality and illicitness, transnationalism and internationalism, and organized and disorganized criminal forms.

Unsettled remains the discussion in terms of the causality of transnational criminal processes. What are the conditions of a combination of criminogenic environments that incubate transnational criminal processes? Is it indeed globalization that promotes transnational crime by trade liberalization, transportation, and information communication technologies? Alternatively, does the state serve as a facilitator of transnational criminal activities, when failing to manage its political and socio-economic institutions or adopting contradictory and inaccurate policies?

A promising area of research is the exploitation of interactions between criminal and lawful actors. Criminal groups engage in complex networks with political and business actors ensuring mutually beneficial exchanges of services, an increase in revenues, as well as continuity and routinization of criminal activities. More sophisticated analyses of these connections are fundamental for the understanding of transnational criminal processes.
States have made positive developments in terms of homogenization of legal systems, minimization of risks, and development of global policy measures. Yet, the progress and the efficacy of pioneering response strategies as well as the gaps in these initiatives should be explored by interdisciplinary research in different national contexts.

Eligible topics for the Special Edition


  • The debate over criminal processes constituting transnational crime
  • The fundamental distinctions between illegality and illicitness
  • Transnationalism and internationalism
  • Organized and disorganized criminal forms.


Guidelines for submission

Manuscripts sent to IdPS should be prepared as for a blind review process. Each copy of the manuscript should include a separate title page with author names and afiliations, and these should not appear anywhere else on the manuscript. The title should be repeated on the first page of the article.
In addtion, the article should not exceed 8,000 words in length including references as required by IdPS submission guidelines. And the manuscript should be sent in electronic format to no later than 14 October 2011, with Special Issue in the subject line.


Information & contacts

Nelli Babayan and Stefano Braghiroli
University of Trento
Via Verdi 8/10 38122 Trento (TN), Italy


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