She made her name following the dollars in terrorist networks, but now Loretta Napoleoni is on the trail of something far more sinister — the gray zone where crime and unregulated credit meet.

Why you should listen

Once it was easy to know where our money was going. Now we live under a system Loretta Napoleoni has dubbed "rogue economics," where the blurry histories of the products we consume and the cash we invest make us complicit in financing barely legal credit schemes -- and even crime, if it's the slavery producing the beans for our lattes or the guts of our mobile phones.

The reach of the newly global market, as Napoleoni argues in her new book, Rogue Economics: Capitalism's New Reality, connects us all to the dark side, regardless of our intentions to be responsible  -- and, she says, our deep connection to fishy credit and unregulated finance has laid the groundwork for the current economic crisis. Her previous book, Terror Incorporated, dives into the true economic impact of terrorism.

What others say

“Napoleoni argues that the crisis won't end until the excesses of globalization -- which include growing criminal markets in sex slaves and counterfeit drugs -- are brought under control.” — Temma Ehrenfeld, Newsweek

Loretta Napoleoni’s TED talk

Loretta Napoleoni on the TED Blog
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Q&A

Q&A with Loretta Napoleoni: The ever-changing face of terrrorism

December 14, 2009

At TEDGlobal, Loretta Napoleoni gave a fascinating talk on her exclusive opportunity to speak with members of the secretive Italian terrorist group, the Red Brigades, and the startling insight she’s gained over decades of studying the economics of terrorism. Before her talk posted, she chatted with the TEDBlog and shared a little more of her […]

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The intricate economics of terrorism: Loretta Napoleoni on TED.com

December 14, 2009

Loretta Napoleoni details her rare opportunity to talk to the secretive Italian Red Brigades — an experience that sparked a lifelong interest in terrorism. She gives a behind-the-scenes look at its complex economics, revealing a surprising connection between money laundering and the US Patriot Act. (Recorded at TEDGlobal 2009, July 2009, Oxford, England. Duration: 15:45) […]

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Loretta Napoleoni at TEDGlobal 2009: Running notes from Session 8

July 23, 2009

Loretta Napoleoni at TEDGlobal 2009, Session 8: July 23, 2009, in Oxford, UK. Credit: TED / James Duncan Davidson Macroeconomist Loretta Napoleoni is here to talk about how terrorism interacts with our daily life. Fifteen years ago she was asked if she would like to interview the Red Brigades — a terrorist organization in Italy […]

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Quotes from Loretta Napoleoni

I had failed the psychological profiling of a terrorist. The central committee of the Red Brigades had judged me too single-minded and too opinionated to become a good terrorist. My friend, on the other hand, she was a good terrorist because she was very good at following orders.
Loretta Napoleoni
TEDGlobal 2009 • 449K views Dec 2009
Informative, Fascinating