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The Extra-Legal

Governance Institute

At the Extra-Legal Governance Institute (ExLegi), University of Oxford, we produce first-class research on organised crime, cyber-crime, paramilitary, insurgents, and traffickers. We focus our attention on how these actors seek to govern markets and territories. We also offer teaching and supervision in these topics at the University of Oxford. 


Our mission is to advance scholarly understanding, create and lead a sustained dialogue with practitioners, and engage with policy makers, stakeholders, and the public to support evidence-based solutions in dealing with these issues.

Image by Drew Beamer







29 April 2024

Index Launch

CRIMGOV launches the World Cybercrime Index (WCI)

The World Cybercrime Index (WCI), released in 2024, identifies the world’s key cybercrime hotspots. It measures the significance of the cybercrime produced in different countries, and then ranks these countries according to their “cybercriminality”: the impact of the cybercrimes produced there, and the skills of the cybercriminals who commit these crimes. The WCI is the first index to use expert survey data to map cybercrime geography.

The Index was developed as a joint partnership between the University of Oxford and UNSW Canberra, and was partly funded by the CRIMGOV Project and ERC Advanced Grant based at the University of Oxford and Sciences Po. It was published in the journal PLOS ONE.

Co-authors include Dr Miranda Bruce from the University of Oxford and UNSW Canberra, Associate Professor Jonathan Lusthaus from the University of Oxford’s Department of Sociology and Oxford School of Global and Area Studies, Professor Federico Varese from Sciences Po in France, Professor Ridhi Kashyap from the University of Oxford, and Professor Nigel Phair from Monash University.

To develop it, the co-authors of the study conducted a survey with 92 of the world’s top experts in cybercrime intelligence and investigations in 2021. These experts nominated up to five countries they believed were the most significant sources of five different cybercrime types – Technical products/services, Attacks and extortion, Scams, Data/identity theft, and Cashing out/money laundering. Experts then rated each country they nominated according to the impact of their cybercrimes, and the technical and professional skills of the cybercriminals who operate there. The co-authors then used this data to generate the World Cybercrime Index.

The WCI has been featured in more than 200 news items across the world, including national newspaper and magazine outlets, ABC News Radio in Australia, and "Somewhere on Earth: the Global Tech Podcast" in the UK.

17 May 2023


Zora Hauser: "One single investigation cannot damage the 'Ndrangheta in the long term"

In the early hours of 3 May 2023, 10 countries took action against the Calabrian mafia, the ‘Ndrangheta. More than 130 people were arrested, 30 of them in Germany. Prosecutors spoke of the biggest international strike so far, against one of the most notorious mafia organisations worldwide.

Following the arrests - the result of a three-year investigation - Dr Zora Hauser spoke to numerous news outlets about whether this operation will have any real impact on the ‘Ndrangheta.

15 March 2023


"A discreet infiltration, a lingering presence" - Zora Hauser discusses the mafia in Germany

Dr Zora Hauser was interviewed by Fluter, Germany's Federal Agency for Civic Education magazine, about her work investigating the presence of the 'Ndrangheta mafia in Germany.

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