Modelling the Risk of Modern Slavery

45 Pages Posted: 27 Jul 2018

Date Written: July 17, 2018


Since 2014, the Walk Free Foundation and Gallup have collected data on modern slavery using nationally representative household surveys implemented through the Gallup World Poll in a total of 48 countries. In preparation for the 2018 Global Slavery Index, we have developed an extrapolation methodology using hierarchical Bayes models to estimate the risk of modern slavery at the country level and inform prevalence estimates beyond the sample of 48 countries.

We identify in our analysis several factors that help predicting individual-level risk, including demographic factors such as age, gender, and employment status, but also a variety of socio-economic and psychographic risk factors, such as feelings about household income, life evaluation scores, and negative experienced affect, as well as country-level vulnerability factors. We demonstrate how a hierarchical Bayes modelling approach can be used to estimate the average prevalence of modern slavery at the country level, while noting the need for larger and more targeted samples to further refine these estimates.

Keywords: Modern Slavery, Forced Labour, Forced Marriage, Hierarchical Bayesian Modelling

JEL Classification: C11, C13, C52, J47, K14

Suggested Citation

Diego-Rosell, Pablo and Joudo Larsen, Jacqueline, Modelling the Risk of Modern Slavery (July 17, 2018). Available at SSRN: or

Pablo Diego-Rosell (Contact Author)

Gallup ( email )

901 F St NW
Washington, DC 20004
United States

Jacqueline Joudo Larsen

Walk Free Foundation ( email )

PO BOx 3155 Broadway
Nedlands, 6009

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