The diversification of organized crime into the illegal trade in natural resources

The rising global scarcity of natural resources increasingly attracts transnational criminal organizations. These criminal organisations rapidly shift from ‘traditional’ criminal activities, such as drug or human trafficking, to the illegal trade in natural resources. They react to socio-economic, political and ecological changes by looking for opportunities to diversify their illegal activities. The proposed research aims to understand how and why transnational criminal organizations diversify into the illegal trade in natural resources by looking at the convergence between environmental crime and other serious crimes.