Call for pro-bono research assistance on financial secrecy

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Ahead of the publication of the results of the 2017 Financial Secrecy Index (FSI), the Tax Justice Network is reaching out to ask for your support in conducting pro-bono research. The FSI 2017 is expected to be published between October and December 2017.

Since its first publication in 2009, the FSI has become the only global ranking of ‘tax havens’, which combines measures of both the secrecy on offer and the international importance of the jurisdiction. Published every two years, the FSI has grown in global media coverage, in practical usage and, increasingly, in academic research. It helps drawing attention to the role played by large economies in the looting of developing countries by facilitating illicit financial flows.

In light of the fast pace of change in international tax and finance, TJN has done an in-depth review process of the FSI methodology which led, among other changes, to the creation of a number of new key indicators and several amendments of existing key indicators. Following these changes, some of the new indicators include research questions which require further in-depth research for each of the 111 jurisdictions we plan to assess for the FSI 2017 .

The relevant research questions focus on the following subjects: a) beneficial ownership information of assets stored in freeports and cash vaults; b) beneficial ownership registry of real estate; c)the requirement of a secondary mechanism of country by country reporting; d) transparency of cross-border tax rulings; e) transparency of both criminal and civil tax proceedings; i) the risk of prison sentences for bankers who manage money of illicit origin.

If you would like to explore any of these subjects, we would be grateful for your assistance in this regard. The research may be of specific relevance if you could combine the research topics for any thesis or research project of your own. We believe the results of this type of comparative research may be of use in an academic context and are of relevance to anyone concerned about illicit financial flows and global wealth inequality. Furthermore, the results can be used as a basis for valuable future studies and potential reports which we may be happy to either initiate or take part in.

If you are interested in any of these research areas/in supporting us, please send an email and a CV to: moran@taxjustice.net, no later than 15 December 2016.

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