Convening collaboration with academics, practitioners, donors, and advocates to develop a richer, more complex understanding of the problem of human trafficking, the root causes that drive vulnerability, and the effectiveness of current anti-trafficking efforts.

Learning from New and Existing Research

We believe that a strategic approach to learning, research, and evidence building is necessary as the anti-trafficking movement approaches its third decade.

A considerable amount of research has been done to understand the issue of human trafficking. In the last 20 years we have learned a great deal. At the same time we have only scratched the surface in our understanding of what drives vulnerability to human trafficking and its effects on individuals, families, and communities.

Extensive thought and innovation is needed to incorporate the evidence provided by research into improving existing programs and developing new methodologies and tactics to reduce the volume of human trafficking due to vulnerability, marginalization, and systemic injustice.

We help build the evidence base for more effective practice through our learning process of:

Consolidating Knowledge

  • Review existing research
  • Listen to stakeholders and learning communities
  • Convene panels of experts
  • Curate existing knowledge for industry stakeholders

Identifying Gaps and Needs

  • In academic knowledge
  • Between academic knowledge and practice
  • Between academic knowledge and policy
  • Between academic knowledge and public understanding

Investigating Possibilities

  • Interviews
  • Case studies
  • Research projects
  • Development of a shared research data library

Our Approach to Learning

Our learning activities include both primary research (data collection, analysis, and evaluation) and secondary research (reading, analyzing, and summarizing existing research) as well as participation in learning communities and collaborations with practitioners and scholars.

Our goal is not merely to conduct the research and report our findings but to use our research and existing research conducted by other scholars and anti-trafficking organizations to re-imagine the response of the anti-trafficking movement to the incredible injustices that lead to trafficking and exploitation.


The Need for Learning

While the movement has chosen to focus on sex trafficking and physical violence as the primary injustices of human trafficking, we see issues of vulnerability and marginalizion as the larger and more significant problems that cause people to be trafficked and exploited.

The industry’s inability to successfully address these root causes prevents the movement from making measurable progress in reducing and eliminating human trafficking and exploitation.

Our primary learning goal is to gather evidence to facilitate a re-imagination of the anti-trafficking movement that prioritizes the wellbeing of people in vulnerable and marginalized situations.

Learning is the first step in rethinking industry approaches to the dynamics of human trafficking, innovating new solutions, and applying those solutions to improve the lives of real people.

Learning Partners