Transnational Criminology and the Globalization of Harm Production

Ben Bowling*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


This chapter first considers the emergence of 'transnational criminology'-a rapidly developing field that sets out specifically to understand crime and justice beyond national boundaries and, in some instances, to contribute to supranational criminal justice policies. It then turns to the idea of 'criminal iatrogenesis': the harmful results of well-intentioned crime control practices. In doing this, the chapter looks in detail at the criminalization of psychotropic drugs as one example among many of how harm-producing crime control models have been exported transnationally even while failing domestically. The final substantive section examines a series of mass murders in Guyana, which provide a vivid illustration of criminal iatrogenesis rooted in the systemic effects of drug prohibition as well as the problems of attempting to understand crime from a transnational and comparative perspective. The chapter concludes with some reflections on the practice of harm production for an emerging global criminology.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationWhat is Criminology?
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780191728839
ISBN (Print)9780199571826
Publication statusPublished - 22 Sept 2011


  • Criminal iatrogenesis
  • Global criminology
  • Mass murders
  • Psychotropic drugs


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