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Biography

Professor Anja Shortland is a Professor of Political Economy. Anja studies private governance in the world’s trickiest markets: hostages, fine art, and antiquities—and how people live, trade, and invest in complex and hostile territories. Although often based on data analysis, her work usually cuts across disciplinary boundaries adopting techniques and insights from sociology, engineering, geography, politics, international relations and economics.

Anja was an Engineering and Economics undergraduate at Oxford and then did her Masters and PhD in International Relations at the LSE. Before coming to King's she worked as a lecturer in Economics at Leicester, a Reader in Economics at Brunel University and as a consultant to the World Bank.

Research

Anja's research focuses on how people structure trades in markets where states do not reliably provide law and order. How can legal entities successfully transact with criminal enterprises? How do private enterprises control and discourage criminal activity when law enforcement is weak? Anja has published widely on the issue of kidnap and hijack for ransom and co-authored the 2013 World Bank Policy Report: "The Pirates of Somalia: Ending the Threat; Rebuilding a Nation."  Her book: Kidnap: Inside the Ransom Business is published by Oxford University Press in 2019.

Anja welcomes PhD applications in the fields of the economics of crime, informal governance and peace science, including from professionals with experience in these areas. 

Teaching

  • Peace Science (Year 3)
  • Economics of Crime (Year 3)

PhD Supervision

Anja welcomes PhD applications in the fields of the economics of crime, informal governance and peace science, including from professionals with experience in these areas.