Developing Freedom

Developing Freedom is a report that attempts to answer the question How can fighting slavery contribute to sustainable development? In writing the report Professor James Cockayne, consulting non-resident Senior Fellow to United Nations University Centre for Policy Research (CPR)’s Modern Slavery Programme and Head of Secretariat for the Liechtenstein Initiative for Finance Against Slavery and Trafficking (FAST), drew on research undertaken by a team operating out of and managed by the United Nations University Centre for Policy Research (UNU-CPR).

Many organisation see slavery as a social or criminal issue and not as an economic, trade or industrial issue. And yet, as the report notes, ending slavery may unleash significant economic growth. Key findings outlined in the report include:

  • Slavery reduces productivity
  • Slavery creates inter-generational poverty
  • Slavery discourages innovation in production
  • Slavery fuels corruption and illicit financial flows
  • Slavery harms the environment

The report also contains case studies on the following industries: Cattle (Brazil), Palm oil (Indonesia, Malaysia, Nigeria), Cotton (Uzbekistan), Fisheries (Bangladesh, India, Philippines, Thailand), Garments and apparel (Bangladesh, Ethiopia, India, UK) and Construction and infrastructure (India, Myanmar, Qatar).

The final chapter of the report outlines an agenda for freedom.

“At the heart of this agenda is the recognition that modern slavery is all
about the intentional denial of individual economic agency, and the stunted human, economic and social development that results.”(Developing Freedom, p225)

Click here to subscribe (free of charge) and access the report.

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