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Institute of Criminology



Paolo Campana is a University Associate Professor in Criminology and Complex Networks. Prior to moving to Cambridge, Paolo was a Research Fellow at the Extra-Legal Governance Institute, Department of Sociology, University of Oxford and a Fellow of Nuffield College, Oxford. He was also a member of the Centre for Corporate Reputation at the Said Business School, Oxford. Previously, he held positions as a Research Officer at the Centre for Criminology (University of Oxford: 2007) and then a Research Associate at the same centre (2008-2010). He holds a PhD from the University of Turin.


Paolo's work specialises in criminal networks and organised crime broadly conceived. He is currently working on issues related to gangs and illegal governance in local communities, migrant smuggling, the emergence of systemic violence and the impact of technology on human trafficking. He has a strong interest in the application of network analysis techniques to the study of organised forms of criminality.

Paolo’s work has appeared in the Journal of Quantitative Criminology, Social Networks, British Journal of Criminology, Crime and Justice, Theoretical Criminology, European Journal of Criminology, Journal of Drug Issues, Rationality and Society, European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research, Policing, Trends in Organised Crime, Global Crime, and Methodological Innovations, among other outlets. His work has also been translated into Chinese, French and Italian.


Key publications: 

Published in peer-reviewed journals

Niezink, N.M.D. and Campana, P. (2022). "When Things Turn Sour: A Network Event Study of Organized Crime Violence". Journal of Quantitative Criminology (2022). online first,

P. Campana and F. Varese (2022). "The Determinants of Group Membership in Organised Crime in the UK: A Network Study", Global Crime, 23(1): 5-22. 

P. Campana and F. Varese (2022), “Studying organized crime networks: data sources boundaries and the limits of structural measures”. Social Networks, 69: 149-159. 

P. Campana and L. Gelsthorpe (2021), "Choosing a Smuggler: Decision-making Among Migrants Smuggled to Europe", European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research, 27(1): 5-21.

P. Campana and A. Giovannetti (2020), "Predicting Violence in Merseyside: a Network-Based Approach Using No Demographic Information". Cambridge Journal of Evidence-Based Policing, 4 (3): 89-102

I. Gollini, A. Caimo and P. Campana (2020), "Modelling interactions among offenders: A latent space approach for interdependent ego-networks". Social Networks, 63, 134-149.

P. Campana (2020), “Human Smuggling: Structure and Mechanisms”. Crime&Justice, 49 (1), 471-519.

L. Baika and P. Campana (2020). “Centrality, Mobility and Specialization: A Study of Drug Markets in a Non-metropolitan Area in the United Kingdom”. Journal of Drug Issues, 50:2, 107-216.   

P. Campana (2018). “Unravelling child trafficking routes”, N&V, Nature Sustainability, 1(5), 216-217.

P. Campana (2018). “Out of Africa: The Organization of Migrant Smuggling Across the Mediterranean”, European Journal of Criminology, 15(4), 481-582. 

P. Campana and F. Varese (2018). “Organized Crime in the United Kingdom: Illegal Governance of Markets and Communities”. British Journal of Criminology, online first,

P. Campana (2017). “The Market for Human Smuggling into Europe: A Macro Perspective". In Policing, 11:4, 448-456.

P. Campana (2016). "Explaining Criminal Networks: Strategies and Potential Pitfalls". Methodological Innovations, 9: 1-10 (full text available Here).

P. Campana (2016). "The structure of human trafficking: Lifting the bonnet on a Nigerian trafficking network". British Journal of Criminology, 56, 68-86.

P. Campana and F. Varese (2016). "Exploitation in Human Trafficking and Smuggling", European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research, 22, 89-105

P. Campana (2016). "When rationality fails: Making sense of 'the slippery slope' to corporate fraud", Theoretical Criminology, 20:3, 322-339.

P. Campana and F. Varese (2013). "Cooperation in criminal organisations: Kinship and violence as credible commitments". Rationality and Society, 25(3): 263-289 (Italian translation: in M. Santoro, ed. 2015, Prospettive sulla criminalita' organizzata. Bologna: Il Mulino).

P. Campana (2013). "Understanding then responding to Italian organised crime operations across territories". Policing, 7(3): 316-325. For a working paper version please Click Here.

P. Campana and F. Varese (2012) "Listening to the Wire: Criteria and techniques for the quantitative analysis of phone intercepts", Trends in Organized Crime, 15:1, 13-30.

P. Campana (2011). "Eavesdropping on the Mob: the functional diversification of Mafia activities across territories", European Journal of Criminology, 8:3, 213-228. (Chinese translation: 鲍罗·科姆帕纳: 《对暴徒的窃听:黑手党跨境活动功能的多元化》 ,载《犯罪研究》 2013年第1期。). 

P. Campana (2011) "Assessing the movement of criminal groups: some analytical remarks", Global Crime, 12:3, 207-217.

P. Campana (2007). "Beyond 9/11: Terrorism and Media in a Mid-term Period View (1998-2005)", Global Crime, 8:4, 381 - 392.

L. Ricolfi and P. Campana (2005). "Suicide Missions in the Palestinian Area: a New Database", Polena, 1, 29 - 51.


Book Chapters

P. Campana (2022). Human Smuggling in North Africa: A Preliminary Exploration of Macro- and Micro-level Displacement Effects". Savona, E.U., Guerette, R.T., Aziani, A. (eds) The Evolution of Illicit Flows. Cham: Springer, 85-101

P. Campana (2019). Human Smuggling. In M. Natarajan (ed), International and Transnational Crime and Justice: An Anthology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

P. Campana (2017). Organised Crime and Protection Rackets. In Bernasco W., Elffers H. and J.-L. Van Gelder (eds), Oxford Handbook of Offender Decision Making. Oxford: Oxford University Press. (For an online version, please click here)


Other Publications

P. Campana (2022). Online and Technology-Facilitated Trafficking in Human Beings. Strasbourg: Council of Europe.

P. Campana (2017). “Macro trends in the smuggling of migrants into Europe: An analytical exploration”, European Police Science and Research Bulletin, 16, 57-64 

P. Campana and G. Cigalla (2015). Attitudes, motivations and strategies of participants in trafficking operations: Evidence from Italy and the United Kingdom. In S. Maffei and S. Carrillo Calderon (eds), New European crimes and trust-based policies. FP7 Research Project Report, 3, 17-33.

P. Campana and F. Varese (2015). Serious and organised crime in 2015 and beyond: priorities for business and government. Discussion paper prepared for CityForum, available online at:

P. Campana, A. Jokinen, M. Viuhko, M. Nikkilä, M. Joutsen and D. Benito (2014). Trafficking in human beings: Report on enforcement statistics. In S. Maffei and L. Markopoulou (eds), New European crimes and trust-based policies. FP7 Research Project Report, Vol. 2, 21-42.

P. Campana (2014). A matter of mistrust. Criminals bond over violent acts. Royal Canadian Mounted Police Gazette, 76:2 (also translated into French).

P. Campana, M. Hough, E. Vaccari and S. Maffei (2013). The intended and unintended consequences of deterrence & inclusive crime control strategies. In S. Maffei and L. Markopoulou (eds), New European crimes and trust-based policies. FP7 Research Project Report, Vol. 1, 49-64.

P. Campana (2013). Governing vs. Trading: The Functional Diversification of Mafia Activities across Territories. In U. Tottel and H. Buchler (eds), Research Conferences on Organised Crime at the Bundeskriminalamt in Germany 2011 - 2013. Koln: Luchterhand - Wolters Kluvers.

P. Campana (2013). The Parmalat scandal: Exploring Europe's biggest bankruptcy. CCR Case Study, Centre for Corporate Reputation, Said Business School, University of Oxford.

P. Campana (2012). The knife and the market: the Camorra before and after Italian unification. Book review, Global Crime, 13:2, 130-134.

R. Younger, R. Olegario, L. David-Barrett, K. Okanamura, T. Yogev, B. Yakis-Douglas and P. Campana (2012). Twenty Five Years of 'Alex'. What can Britain best-loved investment banker teach us about the reputation of the City? Research Paper, Centre for Corporate Reputation, Said Business School, University of Oxford.

P. Campana (2011). Business journalism and corporate reputation in Italy: trust and cooperation among antagonists. Research Paper, Centre for Corporate Reputation, Said Business School, University of Oxford.

P. Campana (2011). Against the concept of 'transnational organized crime': a new taxonomy for assessing Mafia operations across territories. ECPR Standing Group on Organized Crime, Newsletter, 9:3.

P. Campana (2010). The Movement of a Camorra Clan. The functional diversification of Organized Crime groups across territories. Ottawa: Public Safety Canada (also translated into French).

P. Campana (2008). Tra silenzio e omologazione: le mafie sui quotidiani italiani. Lo Straniero, January, 90-91, pp. 12-17. (Between silence and stereotypes: The Mafia on the Italian daily press).


Dataset Publicly Available

LUPA Dataset on Suicide Missions in the Palestinian Area, 1981-2003 (with Luca Ricolfi). Freely available at:


Teaching and Supervisions


Prospective Ph.D. students

Paolo welcomes proposals from prospective Ph.D. students with an interest in organised forms of criminality. The latter includes protection rackets, human trafficking and smuggling, drug trafficking and gangs. Proposals with a strong network analysis component are most welcome. 

Other Professional Activities

Associate Editor: Criminology and Criminal Justice.

Member of the Editorial Board: British Journal of Criminology; Criminology & Public Policy; Trends in Organised Crime; Howard Journal of Crime and Justice; Clarendon Series in Criminology, Oxford University Press.

University Associate Professor in Criminology and Complex Networks
Dr. Paolo  Campana

Contact Details

+44 (0)1223 767375


Darwin College