Category Archives: Policy cycle

Criminal Justice and Environmental Crime: how to tackle organized crime and ecocide?

by Prof. dr. John A.E. Vervaele & dr. Daan P. van Uhm

In the last decades, it has become increasingly clear that the protection of the environment is not only about a specific nature-related interest, but also about the systemic preservation of the commons of nature, which is essential for the life conditions of human beings and flora and fauna. The trade in endangered species puts not only their survival at risk; it deprives humanity of natural resources for their own survival and damages the biodiversity of planet earth. Emissions of greenhouse gases impact global warming and increase the sea levels, but also cause new phenomena such as El Niño in the Americas. These environmental harms are not land or border-related; their complex effects threaten all life on earth. Indeed, the exploitation of natural resources has become a global social problem and, thus, needs to be anticipated in social and scientific thinking.

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Why is “four” better than “three” when it comes to the lines of defence in financial institutions?

photo by SteelCityHobbies

photo by SteelCityHobbies

Certainly one of the greatest banking scandals of any age, the LIBOR fraud rocked the global financial industry. Manipulating interbank interest rates for almost two decades, the scale of the LIBOR deceit was staggering: 3 continents, 10 countries, 20 banks.

How could that happen on such a massive scale?

What LIBOR and other crises have shown is that banks need to enhance corporate governance measures. Most importantly, such incidents have led to a further prioritisation of governmental and supervisory agendas relating to the potential systemic implications of weak internal control systems, shifting the focus from the soundness of individual financial entities to the integrity and stability of the whole financial system. As Schwarcz maintains, the sheer perils financial supervisors have currently to cope with are attached to the risk “that a trigger event, such as an economic shock or institutional failure, causes a chain of bad economic consequences—sometimes referred to as a domino effect”. Systemic risk, indeed. Continue reading