An Issue of “Otherness”: Beliefs that Human Trafficking Cannot Affect One’s In-Group Present Obstacle to Combatting Human Trafficking

Document Type


Publication Date


Source Publication

Global Insights Series #001, LAPOP, Vanderbilt University, June 6


Key Findings:

  • In a study in Nepal, we find that individuals see trafficking as an important issue in Nepal broadly, but not as a particularly important issue in their own communities and their own lives. We call this an “otherness” issue.
  • If human trafficking is viewed as someone else’s problem, which does not affect members of one’s own community, people may be less vigilant about mitigating human trafficking risks.
  • This perception that human trafficking is not a local issue is not simple to remedy. Exposure to awareness campaigns about the risks of human trafficking can effectively increase people’s sense that it is an important national problem while not altering perception about its local importance.