Research

 

Communities and Society Programme

Why does slavery persist and what creates resilience against slavery? 

If we understand why slavery exists today, we will have a better chance of ending it. Efforts to prevent slavery, discover victims, and provide support for survivors draw upon a complex web of services at locality-level. Yet development of coherent anti-slavery policy at the sub-national and local level is frequently ignored or underfunded. Similar to other global challenges, such as climate change, modern slavery requires local action to underpin international and domestic legislation.  

In our Communities and Society Programme, sociologists, political scientists, and scholars of education, law, cultures, and business are showing that community engagement remains—as across history—an essential facet of the anti-slavery movement. Our slavery-free communities project aims to establish how we might work locally, as well as nationally, to create sustainable and resilient localities where slavery cannot flourish. We are developing transferable, scalable and sustainable initiatives which can help communities to become slavery-free.  

This includes national comparative research on multi-agency anti-slavery partnerships, research to understand the contribution of faith groups to anti-slavery action, work alongside statutory and community partners towards creating a slavery-free Nottinghamshire, and an expansion of our place-based approach to address slavery in a number of other cities around the world.  

For example, we have built a resilience framework that supports our place-based approach to addressing slavery. We have theorised the social determinants of slavery-free communities, setting them in context with a systemic view of the anti-slavery agenda, that stretches from prevention through discovery to respite, recovery and sustainable resilience. By understanding the factors contributing to slavery-free communities, we can measure and compare resilience across a wide range of local settings, and so challenge and inspire communities to further action. 


Programme experts

Alison Gardner

Alison Gardner

Description
Rights Lab Associate Director (Communities and Society Programme) and Assistant Professor in Public Policy and Administration
Vernon Coaker

Vernon Coaker

Description
Rights Lab Principal Research Fellow in Antislavery Policy
Oana Burcu

Oana Burcu

Description
Rights Lab Senior Research Fellow in Global Regulations and Labour Exploitation
Juliana Rinaldi Semione

Juliana Rinaldi Semione

Description
Rights Lab Research Fellow and Lead in Survivor Engagement
Imogen Lambert

Imogen Lambert

Description
Rights Lab Research Fellow in Cognitive Impairment and Exploitation
Aisha Abubakar

Aisha Abubakar

Description
Rights Lab Research Fellow in Cognitive Impairment and Exploitation
Amelia Watkins-Smith

Amelia Watkins-Smith

Description
Rights Lab Research Fellow in Slavery-Free Communities and PhD Student in Politics & International Relations
Mariana Crespi de Valldaura

Mariana Crespi de Valldaura

Description
Rights Lab Research Fellow in Faith and Survivor Care and PhD Student in Sociology & Social Policy
Toluwanimi Jaiyebo

Toluwanimi Jaiyebo

Description
Rights Lab PhD Student in Sociology and Social Policy
Juliet Thondhlana

Juliet Thondhlana

Description
Rights Lab Associate Professor in Education and Migration
Robert Marin

Robert Marin

Description
Rights Lab PhD Student
Jen Birks

Jen Birks

Description
Rights Lab Assistant Professor in Culture, Film and Media
Nick Clare

Nick Clare

Description
Rights Lab Assistant Professor of Geography
Austin Choi-Fitzpatrick

Austin Choi-Fitzpatrick

Description
Rights Lab Visiting Professor of Human Rights and Social Movements
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