The business of piracy in Somalia

Percy, Sarah and Shotland, Anja (2013) The business of piracy in Somalia. Journal of Strategic Studies, 36 4: 541-578. doi:10.1080/01402390.2012.750242

Author Percy, Sarah
Shotland, Anja
Title The business of piracy in Somalia
Journal name Journal of Strategic Studies   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0140-2390
Publication date 2013-08-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1080/01402390.2012.750242
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 36
Issue 4
Start page 541
End page 578
Total pages 38
Place of publication Abingdon, Oxon, United Kingdom
Publisher Routledge
Language eng
Abstract This article argues that understanding why Somali piracy has resisted control efforts requires understanding that it is a criminal business rather than a conventional international security problem. We statistically model Somali piracy and draw two conclusions: first, piracy increases with economic stability, and second, naval interdiction efforts are stabilising but not significantly reducing piracy. We argue that these conclusions are not surprising if piracy is understood as an organised crime. Our argument has four components. First, Somali piracy is a land-based problem, and naval control mechanisms are not deterring pirates. Second, improving Somalia's anarchic political situation will not necessarily stop piracy: our statistical analysis demonstrates that piracy is a business which improves with a more stable operating environment. Third, piracy is organised criminal activity, and like other organised crime groups, will be difficult to control, especially if it becomes embedded in state structures. Finally, we argue that few of the relevant players have any real incentives to alter their behaviour.
Keyword Piracy
Organised crime
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collection: School of Political Science and International Studies Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 10 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 15 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Fri, 17 Mar 2017, 13:59:13 EST by Susan Moule on behalf of School of Political Science & Internat'l Studies