Research Papers Shed Light on Human Trafficking

The Program on Human Trafficking and Forced Labor at the American University Washington College of Law has launched a series of issue papers on human trafficking-related issues. The issue papers provide research and analyses on the intersection of human rights, trafficking, sex work, and sexual rights, and are intended for activists, governments, and donors to inform their policy positions and advocacy.

Currently available issue papers include:

  • UN Trafficking Protocol: An Imperfect Approach
  • Slavery, Forced Labor, Debt Bondage, and Human Trafficking: From Conceptual Confusion to Targeted Solutions
  • Fact or Fiction: What Do We Really Know About Human Trafficking?

Forthcoming issue papers will look at health, children and adolescents, labor demand, and the sex sector. Issue Papers are available in English, French, and Spanish at

The issue papers have been field tested in India, Thailand, Canada, Mexico, and the United States. The topics were developed at a Summit on Human Trafficking that was held in New York in May 2006, with the support of the Open Society Foundations and the Global Fund for Women. Participants from around the world agreed on the need to work together on developing rights-based approaches to areas of overlap in their work on human trafficking, sex work, migration, labor, and health.

The Program on Human Trafficking and Forced Labor aims to increase critical thinking and open respectful dialogue on trafficking-related issues. The issue papers are copyrighted but freely available for anyone to use, without modification and with attribution.