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Financial Sustainability and Illicit Financial Flows


About the course

Important dates and deadlines

This course has been canceled for Autumn Term 2021.


The course aims at providing a critical introduction to the challenges facing 2030 Agenda from the perspective of global financial markets and consequences of illicit finance flow. The course emphasizes problems and possible solutions involved in implementing the 2030 Agenda by a critical analysis of on-going conventions and standards in place that aim to improve the capacity of governments and the functioning of international systems for combating illicit financial flows in both the Global North and the Global South.

The course looks not only at the macro level of international conventions and standards but also supply chains at a meso level of smuggling, human trafficking, and outsourcing minerals or metals and the micro level of conflict affected and high-risk areas with consequences for exploitation of both individuals and environments.. The course invites doctoral students to connect their own research to the themes of the course, regardless of their disciplinary background.

The language of instruction is English.

Learning outcomes

  • identify the methods that criminals use to launder money and finance terrorism and undermine sustainability of financial markets. Demonstrate knowledge about and understanding of the 2030 Agenda  specific goal (Target 16.4) to reduce illicit financial and arms flow (IFF). 
  • ability to use a wide variety of theoretical and empirical perspectives centered on issues of maintaining financial sustainability pertinent to SDG Targets related to illicit financial flows including finding best practices in regulating of financial markets (Target 10.5), access to financial services (Target 8.1) and  cheaper remittances (Target 10.c) 
  • critically examine distributional and other societal consequences of illicit financial flows for processes and institutions central to the 2030 Agenda
  • discuss concepts central to the 2030 Agenda such as corruption, safe migration and agricultural productivity/incomes and illicit financial flows.
  • identify and critically discuss potential conflicts between various Sustainable Development Goals and the international use of illicit financial flows by criminals to exploit differences between national legal systems and the use of weak international cooperation in order to hide funds from authorities.
  • critically examine strengths and shortcomings of the 2030 Agenda and of alternative sustainable development visions and frameworks

Course information

Course coordinators
Antoinette Hetzler

Course administrator
Frank Schreier

The documents below open in a new window.

Course syllabus
Course schedule (coming soon)
Reading list