This session will explore the challenges associated with documenting, analyzing and confronting two egregious international crimes – grand corruption and genocide. The first order challenge is factual. How do researchers uncover reliable data on activity that is often conducted covertly by powerful state and corporate officials? Even when data is accessible, the criminal activity is frequently technically complex, dispersed over complex geopolitical terrains, which creates further barriers. The second order challenge is epistemic. Once data-sets have been produced which permit reliable assessments to be made of the subject matter, how do we use data-analytics and theory to uncover deeper causative processes that allude descriptive accounts? Practical answers to these questions will be offered, drawing on Lasslett’s investigative research into grand corruption in Eurasia and the South Pacific, and Green’s research on genocide in Myanmar.
Penny Green (Queen Mary University of London)
Kristian Lasslett (Ulster University)
Rossella Panarese (Radio3Scienza)