Trafficking Culture aims to produce an evidence-based picture of the contemporary global trade in looted cultural objects. This research programme is based at the University of Glasgow and is funded by the European Research Council.
On this website, you can keep up to date with the research as it progresses. The Projects page outlines the research activities which make up the overall research programme, and links to summaries of work to be undertaken in each research strand.
The Encyclopedia is a constantly evolving resource which presents introductory materials on the research topic. We encourage you to start here if you are looking for a short case study of a famously looted artefact, a critical analysis of a relevant law, a selection of methodological orientations for conducting research on the topic, or a brief introduction to criminological or social theory which may help us understand and engage with the issues. The Publications tab will take you to our research output past and present.
We very much welcome communication from researchers and others interested in the topic. Please see our Contact page.
‘Temple Looting in Cambodia: Anatomy of a Statue Trafficking Network’ free for a limited time
Simon Mackenzie and Tess Davis‘ latest article is available, free to access for a limited period, via the British Journal of Criminology website here. This and other work by the Trafficking Culture Project has recently been featured on the National Geographic website.
Emiline Smith speaking at University of Hong Kong, 24 March
17 Mar 2015
Emiline Smith will present ‘Cross-Border Cultural Property Trade in Hong Kong’
Brodie to deliver keynote at public conference on ‘Archaeological Looting’ in Chicago
22 Feb 2015
Neil Brodie will be delivering the keynote lecture at a conference entitled Archaeological Looting:...
‘Syrian Heritage in Crisis’ with Neil Brodie; 16 Jan. British Academy, London.
13 Jan 2015
Neil Brodie will be speaking alongside a panel of experts on the antiquities trafficking and...
Looters or Heroes? Production of Illegality and Memories of ‘Looting’ in Mali
This paper proposes an ethnographical perspective of the clandestine trade in antiquities in Mali...
WikiLeaks, Text, and Archaeology: The Case of the Schøyen Incantation Bowls
Do ancient texts speak for themselves? Does the historical interpretation of an inscribed...
Scholarship and insurgency? The study and trade of Iraqi antiquities.
This article explains why the academic study and publication of looted cuneiform tablets and...