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'The politics of illicit trade statistics.' Illicit Trade webinar by dr. Lukas Linsi

When:We 07-06-2023 12:00 - 13:00
Where:Online, to recieve the link, mail to:
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Economic statistics are generally considered as unproblematic, accurate and authoritative measures of cross-border flows. Yet, headline economic indicators do not fall from the sky. They are constructed through processes that are shaped by political forces.

The first part of the talk will highlight the politics of economic statistics more broadly and argue that economic statistics are more ambiguous constructs than it is commonly realized.

The second part will introduce ongoing research (joint work with Francesco Giumelli, Leonard Seabrooke and Seiki Tanaka) that zooms in on the peculiar case of statistics on illicit trade.

By their nature, cross-border illegal activities are intrinsically difficult to measure, and statistics on illicit trade frequently represent rough ‘guesstimates’ rather than valid measures. Nonetheless, they are often being published as if they were accurate, unproblematic estimates. Diving into the politics behind illicit trade statistics, the research asks what it is that drives our desire to 'measure the unmeasurable'.

About dr. Lukas Linsi

dr. Lukas Linsi is assistant professor in international political economy at the Faculty of Arts, University of Groningen. His research interests include global politics, international trade, corporate power, and economic measurement.

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