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New Paper “Pimping and Profitability Testing the Economics of Trafficking in Street Sex Markets in Atlantic City, New Jersey”

Marcus, A., Sanson, J., Horning, A., Thompson, E., & Curtis, R. (2016). Pimping and Profitability Testing the Economics of Trafficking in Street Sex Markets in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Sociological Perspectives59(1), 46-65.

Human trafficking has been identified as the second or third most profitable illicit business on the planet. Underlying these claims and billions of dollars in policy funding since the 1990s is an economics of human trafficking built heavily on two assumptions. The first is that nonconsensual labor is more profitable than consensual labor with minors being particularly profitable due to their ubiquity and inability to effectively consent. The second is that, unlike illicit narcotic and weapons sales, human trafficking involves a uniquely renewable and nearly limitless source of profit. This article uses empirical data collected from street sex markets in Atlantic City, New Jersey in 2010–2012 to test some of the assumptions of the economics of human trafficking and puts particular focus on U.S.-based domestic minor sex trafficking by exploring market practices and understandings of young sex workers and pimps/third parties who have opportunities to benefit from the sexual labor of minors. Consistent with broader literature by economic historians and labor process scholars, findings do not support the assumptions of trafficking economics, suggesting the need for trafficking economists and policymakers to give more consideration to local political economies of sex in the design of antitrafficking policy.

New Paper “Strength in Numbers: A Model for Undergraduate Research Training and Education in the Social and Behavioral Sciences”

Martin, Y. C., Marcus, A., Curtis, R., Eichenbaum, J., & Drucker, E. (2016). Strength in Numbers: A Model for Undergraduate Research Training and Education in the Social and Behavioral Sciences. Journal of Criminal Justice Education, 1-17.


This study describes a new approach to undergraduate science training that offers an alternate model to the national objective of scaling up scientific research interests and capabilities among undergraduate students. With this new focus, we seek to more effectively bring scientific research methods and experiences to larger numbers of students in non-elite educational circumstances. Our model has been designed and implemented, at the John Jay College and the Borough of Manhattan Community College, both of which are part of the City University of New York (CUNY), where we have a majority non-White and economically disadvantaged student body. We have successfully engaged large numbers of undergraduate students by linking multiple classes in the social and behavioral sciences to build collective cross-disciplinary research projects that give every enrolled student an opportunity to receive high-quality research training and create cumulative data sets over years that are cumulative, collaborative, and of professional value.

New Paper “No Love for Children: Reciprocity, Science, and Engagement in the Study of Child Sex Trafficking.”

Marcus, Anthony, and Ric Curtis. “No Love for Children: Reciprocity, Science, and Engagement in the Study of Child Sex Trafficking.” Ethical Concerns in Research on Human Trafficking. Springer International Publishing, 2016. 191-204.


New paper connecting the future of the “Internet Of Things” with the historic evolution of human/primate foraging behaviors


Social Deference and Hunger as Mechanisms for Starvation Avoidance in Cognitive Radio Societies, Proceedings of IWCMC 2016, Paphos Cyprus
Anna Wisniewska, Bilal Khan, Ala Al-Fuqaha, Kirk Dombrowski, Mohammad Al-Shattal

Wireless communication is an increasingly ubiquitous and important resource substrate of the digital ecosystem.  In the face of the rapid growth in the population of Internet of Things (IoT), however, uncoordinated access to limited resources of radio spectrum is likely to lead to mass starvation. Here we put forward a new bio-social paradigm for cognitive radio, extending previous models in which the secondary users of spectrum alternate stochastically between foraging and consuming behaviors. In this paper, we ask and resolve two questions: (1) What costs and benefits does social deference to the group yield for each of the individuals therein? and (2) Can a notion of individual “hunger” form the basis of a distributed social deference scheme that is free of group coordination costs? Through a series of simulation experiments grounded in a well-specified formal model, we show that social deference improves both the fairness and the reliability of spectrum resource allocation, and moreover, that the concept of individual “hunger” can be used to implement social deference with minimal group coordination overhead. The results have consequences both in suggesting potential improvements for distributed spectrum access, and in understanding the evolutionary pressures on the behaviors of individual devices within emerging digital IoT societies.

New paper evaluating network factors influencing the effectiveness of suicide prevention interventions in remote North American communities

“Creating a Community of Practice to Prevent Suicide Through Multiple Channels: Describing the Theoretical Foundations and Structured Learning of PC CARES.” International Quarterly of Community Health Education 36(2): 115–122.
Lisa Wexler, Diane McEachern, Gloria DiFulvio, Cristine Smith, Louis Graham, and Kirk Dombrowski 

It is critical to develop practical, effective, ecological, and decolonizing approaches to indigenous suicide prevention and health promotion for the North American communities. The youth suicide rates in predominantly indigenous small, rural, and remote Northern communities are unacceptably high. This health disparity, however, is fairly recent, occurring over the last 50 to 100 years as communities experienced forced social, economic, and political change and intergenerational trauma. These conditions increase suicide risk and can reduce people’s access to shared protective factors and processes. In this context, it is imperative that suicide prevention includes—at its heart— decolonization, while also utilizing the “best practices” from research to effectively address the issue from multiple levels. This article describes such an approach: Promoting Community Conversations About Research to End Suicide (PC CARES). PC CARES uses popular education strategies to build a “community of practice” among local and regional service providers, friends, and families that fosters personal and collective learning about suicide prevention in order to spur practical action on multiple levels to prevent suicide and promote health. This article will discuss the theoretical underpinnings of the community intervention and describe the form that PC CARES takes to structure ongoing dialogue, learning, solidarity, and multilevel mobilization for suicide prevention.