• Offered by Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research
  • ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Course subject Criminology
  • Areas of interest Criminology
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Mode of delivery Online or In Person

This course  analyses major ‘organized crime’ groups across the globe and the various forms of transnational crime encountered in the contemporary setting. Transnational crime includes illicit markets such as for drugs, antiques and human smuggling and trafficking, small arms and strategic weapons smuggling, intellectual property fraud and fake pharmaceuticals, piracy and environmental crime (exotic species and hazardous waste disposal) undertaken by a variety of crime groups, criminal networks and criminalized states. The role of organised crime groups is compared and explored in terms of both local (e.g. protection, extortion, gambling, prostitution) and cross border markets and activities, including the relationship between crime and terrorism.

The course begins by assessing the concepts, definitions and theories of transnational crime and organised crime and exploring their origins and phenomena across different geographical regions.  Traditional forms of organised crime such as Mafia, Triads, Yakuza, and Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs (OMCGs) and new hybrid and non-traditional forms (as found in cyberspace, illicit markets and “grey” business) are reviewed and their relative mobility across activities, place and ethnicity assessed.  Case studies will be used to analyse the practices and modus operandi of crime groups and macro-criminal networks in transnational crime.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

Upon Successful completion of this course, students will be able to:
  1. Critically review the main theoretical approaches to the study of transnational organised crime.
  2. Understand and critically assess the macro and micro causes of transnational crime.
  3. Identify the main characteristics, activities, actors and forms of transnational organised crime.
  4. Assess the threat of different forms of transnational crime and means to suppress and disrupt these activities.
  5. Identify and critically analyse current counter measures and anti-organised crime and transnational crime policies at the national and international level.
  6. Critically review the literature and response to the phenomena of criminal states and the intersection

Indicative Assessment

Case study selection – threat assessment (800 words): 10% (LO 1 - 3)

Case Study (Problem Based Learning [PBL]) seminar presentation of 30 minutes (groups 4-6): 20% (LO 3-6)

Literature review symposium (800 words): 15% (LO 1-3)

Major Research Essay (4000 words): 50% (LO 1-6) 

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130 hours of total student learning time made up from: a) 36 hours of contact over 12 weeks: 18 hours of lectures, and 18 hours of seminars and workshops; and, b) 94 hours of independent student research, reading and writing.

Requisite and Incompatibility

You are not able to enrol in this course if you have previously completed CRIM6002 or CRIM2002 unless with permission of the convenor.

Preliminary Reading

Allum, Felia and Stan Gilmour, Eds., 2012, The Routledge Handbook of Transnational Organized Crime, Routledge, London.
Braithwaite, John and Ali Wardak, 2013, ‘Crime and War in Afghanistan: Part I: The Hobbesian Solution’, British Journal of Criminology, 53 (2): 179-196.
Gambetta, D. 1993, The Sicilian Mafia: The Business of Protection, Harvard University Press
Grabosky, P and Stohl, M 2010, Crime and Terrorism (SAGE, London)
Madsen, F. G. 2009, Transnational Organized Crime (Routledge, London)
Paoli, Letizia Ed. 2014, Oxford Handbook of Organized Crime, OUP.
Varese, Frederico. 2011, Mafia on the Move, Princeton, NJ.
UNODC, 2013, Transnational Organised Crime in East Asia and the Pacific, UN Bangkok: see: http://www.unodc.org/documents/data-and-analysis/Studies/TOCTA_EAP_web.pdf
Wardak Ali and Braithwaite, John, 2012, 'Crime and war in Afghanistan, Part 2: A Jeffersonian alternative', The British Journal of Criminology, 53, 197-214



Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees.  Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2018 $3180
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2018 $4860
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

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