SEST-720 Combating the Finance of Transnational Threats
Fall for 2017-2018
Bauer, Kate ; Levitt, Matt
This course explores how transnational threats -- from terrorism to WMD proliferation and insurgencies -- are funded and resourced, how governments and other international actors seeks to combat the financing of transnational threats, what the goals of such efforts are or should be, and whether these efforts are effective, worthwhile, and how to improve them. It investigates how sub-national terrorist groups, illicit facilitation networks, national proliferation programs, or other illicit actors finance their activities and transfer funds, and analyzes key choke points through which illicit funds may flow. The course examines the tools available to states, international organizations, and the private sector to both follow the money and stem the flow of illicit funds. The course also covers policy debates such as the comparative utility of financial tools in national security, the relative benefits of following or freezing funds, and more. The course includes case studies and group work to provide students hands-on exposure to the course themes.
This course is taught through a combination of lecture, discussion and participatory exercises, including a simulation. Each class meeting will raise and address key concepts and analyze the implications these present at the tactical, strategic and policy levels. Many meetings will flesh out these ideas through in-class exercises and/or in-class discussions with current practitioners (policymakers, experts, etc.).