In Latin America and the Caribbean, as in most of the world, organized crime destabilizes governments, plagues neighborhoods, undermines institutions and greatly affects how regional powers interact on trade, economic and military matters. InSight Crime, hosted by the Center for Latin American and Latino Studies at American University, seeks to deal with these issues by creating an information resource and networking tool designed for students, academics, analysts, researchers, policymakers, journalists, non-governmental workers, government officials and businesses, to obtain the information and contacts they need to tackle the problems that organized crime increasingly presents in Latin America and the Caribbean.
The cornerstone of the initiative is a one-stop shop website that summarizes major new events and provides original ground-level multi-media reports and in-depth investigations on organized crime that go beyond coverage in the traditional media. InSight Crime connects the players, organizations and events in the region with regular news analysis, and provides the most thorough and up to date information on organized crime in the region. The website also serves as a clearinghouse for government reports, academic studies and analysis from think tanks and foundations, connecting people to initiatives and ideas that circulate, often unseen.
CLALS hosts the DC-based office of this innovative project so as to maximize its visibility and influence in the scholarly community as well as in non-academic institutions located in Washington. InSight Crime has an additional center of operation in Colombia. InSight Crime networks directly with journalists, investigators and researchers, eventually bringing some of them in as collaborators. InSight Crime convenes workshops where journalists and policy professionals engage scholars whose work intersects with their concerns. Finally, InSight Crime reaches for government and private sector clients by providing special reports that help fund the overall project by bringing clients into contact with the network of people who are working on the subject of organized crime.
InSight Crime has launched a Spanish language website. This mirrors, in some ways, the current English language site, providing analysis, briefs and investigations.
InSight Crime is simultaneously launching a special series on displacement and organized crime with four partner organizations: Animal Politico in Mexico, El Faro in El Salvador, Plaza Pública in Guatemala, and VerdadAbierta.com in Colombia. The partners investigated displacement in four countries and InSight Crime coordinated the project. The project appears in two languages; English and Spanish. It has video, multimedia and the human stories to bring this important issue to the fore. This is the first of a two-part special on organized crime and human rights, funded by Internews. The second part on slavery and organized crime is available on our website, and our partners' sites, in both English and Spanish.