BISA Conference | June 2017

Rosaleen Duffy will be co-convening and presenting at a panel with Jan Selby (University of Sussex) at BISA 2017.

The 2017 British International Studies Association (BISA) conference takes place from 14-16 June in Brighton. BIOSEC’s Rosaleen Duffy will be co-convening a panel with Prof Jan Selby (University of Sussex) entitled Debating environment and security: moving IR forward and presenting a paper on Political Ecology, Wildlife Trafficking and Threat Finance. She will also be participating in a roundtable on ‘Political strategies for Earth system governance and social justice’.

The panel takes place on Thursday 13th June, 14:00-15:30, in the Keats Room. Rosaleen’s abstract is below, and a full programme for BISA 2017 can be found here:

Abstract: Political Ecology, Wildlife Trafficking and Threat Finance

Biodiversity losses from the illegal wildlife trade are being increasingly framed as a security issue in conceptual terms as well as in policy debates. This deviates from more traditional understandings of biodiversity losses as a threat to economies or to human health and well-being. Instead, it is argued that organised crime networks and terrorist groups use the illegal wildlife trade to generate threat finance (Wyatt, 2013; White, 2014; Nelleman et al, 2014). The increasing sophistication of wildlife trafficking networks is a reflection of their link with other serious offences, including theft, fraud, corruption, drugs and human trafficking, counterfeiting, firearms smuggling, and money laundering (UN, 2013). A further development of this argument is that the illegal wildlife trade constitutes a significant national and global security threat (Wyatt, 2013; Duffy, 2016).  There are three sets of conceptual debates which help us understand these links: political ecology, environmental security and green criminology. However, taken in isolation, they do not adequately explain these emerging dynamics. The purpose of this paper is to build on these analyses and develop a fresh conceptual foundation for understanding the ways that biodiversity protection, illegal wildlife trade and security concerns are being integrated.

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