Human Trafficking Research
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To find out more information on a specific research report, please see the research links found in the chart or contact the authors directly.
Research is an integral vehicle for enhancing the U.S. government’s understanding of the multifaceted nature of human trafficking, also referred to as modern slavery, and for guiding its counter-trafficking policies and programs. Research has also led the anti-trafficking community to rethink existing assumptions and examine new approaches to combat human trafficking.
The Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons supports evidence-based research that suggests effective strategies for combating modern slavery and highlights successful counter-trafficking measures. In an effort to be transparent and share the increasing number of research reports on human trafficking, the Office has compiled information on research funded by agencies throughout the U.S. government.
Commitment to Fighting Modern Slavery through Research
Over the last decade the U.S. government has funded research focused on labor and sex trafficking in every global area. There has been research on a myriad of topics related to human trafficking, including victim services, law enforcement actions, and methods of prevention. There have also been significant research evaluation studies to measure program effectiveness, impact, and potential for replication. Research has begun to make inroads and close knowledge gaps in our understanding about human trafficking.
• For example, Department of Justice funded research has begun to track trafficking within the United States and has uncovered effective techniques for both finding victims and improving law enforcement responses to these victims.
• The Department of State, for instance, has funded IOM’s Counter-Trafficking Module Database, leading to greater analysis of evolving trends. These trends include the growing recognition of trafficking of men, greater identification of an older victim population, and an increased awareness of forced labor cases.
The U.S. government continues to fund qualified organizations through grants and cooperative agreements. U.S. government agencies periodically seek proposals from qualified U.S. organizations, researchers, and academic institutions to conduct research on modern slavery.