The Global Initiative Network

GIN Member

Luigi Achilli

Marie Curie Research Fellow, European University Institute

Luigi Achilli is Marie Curie Fellow at the European University Institute in Italy and adjunct professor at the San Diego State University in California.

He holds a Ph.D. in social anthropology from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS). He taught at Cambridge, SOAS, and various universities in the Middle East. His work focuses on transnational crime, irregular migration and forced displacement.

His ongoing Marie Curie research – MAPS – project pushes these interests further toward a comparative analysis of the US-Mexico border and the Mediterranean human smuggling routes. This has culminated with the publication of several articles and other influential work on the topic. His currently co-editing the new edition of “Global Human Smuggling” (John Hopkins UP, New York, 2020).

Selected Publications

Monographs and special issues

  • 2019, Achilli, L. Sanchez, G. Critical Insights on Irregular Migration Facilitation. RSCAS-EUI, Florence, DOI: 10.2870/111653
  • 2018, Achilli, L. Sanchez, G. & Zhang, S. (eds.) 2018. Crimes of Solidarity in Mobility: Alternative Views on Migrant Smuggling. The ANNALS of American Academy of Social and Political Science, Volume 676, Issue 1,DOI: 10.1177/0002716217746908
  • 2015 Achilli, L. Palestinian Refugees and Identity: Nationalism, Politics and the Everyday, I.B.Tauris, London, ISBN: 9781780769110

Peer-reviewed articles 

  • 2019, Achilli, L. Tinti, A. “Debunking the smuggler-terrorist nexus: human smuggling and the Islamic State in the Middle East.” Studies in Conflict & Terrorism DOI: 10.1080/1057610X.2019.1678884
  • 2019, Achilli, L & Abu Samra, M. “Beyond legality and illegality: Palestinian informal networks and the ethno-political facilitation of irregular migration from Syria”, JEMS DOI: 10.1080/1369183X.2019.1671181
  • 2019, Achilli, L. “Waiting for the smuggler: tales across the border”, Public Anthropologist, 1(2): 194-207 DOI: 10.1163/25891715-00102004
  • 2018, Achilli, L. “The ‘good’ smuggler: the ethics and morals of human smuggling among Syrians”, Crimes of Solidarity in Mobility: Alternative Views on Migrant Smuggling. ANNALS 676(1): 77-96. DOI: 10.1177/0002716217746641
  • 2017, Achilli, L. & Sanchez, G. “Methodological approaches in human smuggling research: Documenting irregular migration facilitation in the Americas and the Middle East”, Migration Policy Practice 8(2), 21-25


Policy briefs

  • 2017 Achilli, L. Sanchez, G. “What Does It Mean to Disrupt the Business Models of People Smugglers?” , Migration Policy Centre (EUI), policy brief
    DOI: 10.2870/141395
  • 2015 Achilli, L. “The smuggler: hero or felon?”, Migration Policy Centre (EUI), policy brief, DOI: 10.2870/36445

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