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Better together: A transdisciplinary approach to disrupt human trafficking

NCJ Number
Date Published
6 pages

This paper discusses a cross-disciplinary approach to using ISE tools to address human trafficking.


This article presents a transdisciplinary approach to create ISE (information and communication technology [ICT] solutions and education) tools that are built by including perspectives from a diverse team composed of ISE researchers, social scientists, a human trafficking investigative task force and a survivor-centered ad­visory group. Each group brings a unique viewpoint and helps ensure the results address the roots of the underlying issues surrounding human trafficking. The underlying networks that support human trafficking, those that recruit victims and those that exploit, have been analyzed from multiple perspectives within the social science, engineering, legal and business fields. These analyses can help identify potential actions to disrupt the networks. The authors of this study empha­size potential disruptions to highlight the fact that certain ac­tions may simply displace trafficking rather than reduce it. Industrial and systems engineering can help address the is­sue of human trafficking. However, these tools are only valuable when created in a socially responsible manner in order to identify potential un­intended consequences and have buy-in on modeling choices, assumptions and results from human trafficking domain mat­ter experts.

Date Published: January 1, 2021