Confronting the Business Models of Modern Slavery

Andrew Crane, Genevieve LeBaron, Kam Phung, Laya Behbahani, Jean Allain

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Despite growing attention from companies and regulators looking to eradicate modern slavery, we know little about how slavery works from a business perspective. We address this gap by empirically examining innovations in the business models of modern slavery, focusing on how the business models of slavery in advanced economies have evolved since slavery was legally abolished. While continuities exist, novel business models have emerged based on new actors, activities, and linkages. We categorize these as four innovative models per actors involved (producer/intermediary) and how value is created and captured (revenue generation/cost reduction), and discuss implications for research, policy, and practice.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Management Inquiry
Publication statusAcceptance date - 25 Jan 2021


  • Modern Slavery
  • Business models
  • Forced labour
  • Slavery
  • Strategy

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