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Forced Labor: Coercion and Exploitation in the Private Economy

Beate Andrees and Patrick Belser, editors
Forced Labor: Coercion and Exploitation in the Private Economy
ISBN: 978-1-58826-664-4
ISBN: 978-1-58826-689-7
2009/229 pages/LC: 2009009737

"A necessary read for any person seeking information on the subject, as it develops a framework to understand not only the micro-level interactions which produce highly coercive forms of labor organization, but also the macro-level conditions which serve to perpetuate global systems of exploitation."—Contemporary Sociology

"Provides the reader with excellent and firsthand research in the field of forced labor."—Silvia Scarpa, Enterprise and Society

"A careful and far-reaching inquiry into the phenomenon of forced labor.... Its pages are filled with compelling facts and insights."—Jayesh M. Rathod, Comparative Labor Law and Policy Journal

"Excellent.... This state-of-the-art volume provides a first-rate analysis of the dynamics leading to the occurrence of forced labour, its global distribution, and different types of policy responses."—Jens Lerche, SOAS, University of London


Two centuries after the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade, at least 12.3 million people are subjected to modern forms of forced labor—in rich countries, as well as poor ones.

The authors of Forced Labor present state-of-the art research on the manifestations of these slavery-like practices, why they continue to survive, and how they can be eliminated. Their conceptually rich analysis, combined with insightful case studies from Asia, Europe, and Latin America, is a major contribution on an issue of pressing global concern.


Beate Andrees is an antitrafficking expert in the International Labour Organization’s Special Action Programme to Combat Forced Labour. Patrick Belser is an economist with the ILO, where he works on forced labor and wage issues.


  • Foreword—R. Plant.
  • Introduction—the Editors.
  • "Slave Labor" in Brazil—L. Sakamoto.
  • Debt Bondage and Ethnic Discrimination in Latin America—E. Bedoya, A. Bedoya, and P. Belser.
  • Bonded Labor in Pakistan—A. Khan.
  • The Legacy of Slavery in Niger—A.R. Sékou and S. Abdoulkarimou.
  • Trafficking for Forced Labor in Europe—B. Andrees.
  • Strengthening Labor Market Governance Against Forced Labor—the Editors.
  • Criminalizing Human Trafficking and Protecting the Victims—R. Malpani.
  • Empowering Communities: Lessons from Tamil Nadu, India—I. Guérin, C. O’Reilly, M. Roesch, M. Sathya, and G. Venkatasubramanian.
  • Improving Forced Labor Statistics—P. Belser and M. de Cock.