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Human Trafficking Center

Human Trafficking Flow Map

Welcome to the Interactive Human Trafficking Flow Map

Human trafficking is a modern scourge that is growing in visibility with the spread of globalization. A large amount of human trafficking involves the flow of victims across national borders. We created the Human Trafficking Flow Map to be a tool that can be used by policymakers, researchers, advocates, students and the general public to increase awareness and engage with the problem of human trafficking in an interactive way. The Human Trafficking Flow Map is the product of years of research by the graduate students and faculty of the Human Trafficking Center, with support from the Frederick S. Pardee Center for International Futures, at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver (Oliver Kaplan, Claude d’Estrée, and Jonathan Moyer, Principal Investigators). The visualization was made possible thanks to support from a Korbel School Research Fund grant. The visualization design and development work was conducted by the Center for Statistics and Visualization at the University of Denver.


*Please note: the Human Trafficking Flow Map is in its final stages of development. It is not yet available but will be coming soon.



  • The map is designed to be user-friendly and render on regular browsers as well as mobile devices. To view human trafficking flows for a given country, select the country, direction of trafficking, and type of trafficking.
  • Click the “+” or “-” buttons to zoom in or out (or double-click to zoom in).
  • Click the line of any flow to open a pop-up window with additional details on trafficking patterns.
  • To compare patterns of different countries, select an additional country.
  • To share a map that you have created, copy the URL of your query. You can use your computer’s screenshot capture function to copy and save a map image (Windows: Windows + PrtScn; Mac: Command + Shift + 4). The image should appear on your desktop.


About the data

Human trafficking is defined as the recruitment and/ or movement of someone within or across borders, through the abuse of power/ position with the intention of forced exploitation, commercial or otherwise. The current human trafficking flow data visualized on the map are based on the 2014 U.S. State Department Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report and cover human trafficking activity from April 2013-March 2014. The data is based on conceptual definitions and a data classification process developed by the Human Trafficking Center. The compilation of information about human trafficking flows for any given country is based on a comprehensive review of the TIP report narratives of all countries, and therefore goes beyond the information reported within a single country narrative.


The map allows users to visualize different types of human trafficking flows. We have created classifications of types of human trafficking to distinguish between forms of sex trafficking (commercial sexual exploitation) and labor trafficking (forced labor). Sex trafficking flows include Sexual exploitation, Child sexual exploitation, and Forced marriage (Child sex tourism is not currently represented as it reflects a flow of “johns” or traffickers rather than victims). Labor-related trafficking flows include Forced labor, Domestic servitude, Forced drug trafficking, Forced begging, Child soldiers, and Forced criminal activity (the ILO has recognized commercial sexual exploitation as a form of forced labor but we have decided to distinguish between these two main types of human trafficking here for analytical purposes). 


Our map only includes countries in the TIP report and currently covers 188 countries. Countries that are not represented in the visualization platform are absent because they are not covered in the TIP report. The map does not display domestic-only trafficking patterns. The human trafficking flows represented only include bilateral flows between two countries (in some cases passing through a third transit country). The trafficking flows between countries are represented by links between national capitals (which does not imply that flows are point-to-point). The data do not include more general flows between geographic regions or subregions. Data for additional years will be added to the map soon.


The pop-up windows (accessed by clicking on the flow lines) describe the nature of human trafficking flows in greater detail, including types of victims and the nature of trafficking and traffickers. Some flows do not have a “type” specified in the TIP report. The number of types of reported flows of human trafficking victims between countries is also displayed (e.g., number of particular reported combinations of victims, trafficking, and traffickers).The number of reported flows is based on particular incidents of human trafficking or modern-day slavery but does not reflect a comprehensive count of cases, since there are challenges to counting individual victims of this hidden crime.


Help us improve our platform and data

Do you see some information that we are missing? Is there a human trafficking flow relationship in our data that does not look quite right? Let us know by submitting your suggestions via our wiki form. Please provide sources whenever possible so we can verify your submission. Thank you for helping us to improve our platform.


Support our work

We would also be glad to hear how you use this tool. Have you found any informative relationships? Did you find our visualization helpful for your anti-trafficking work? Let us know by writing us at To support our work, click here or contact us directly.


About the Human Trafficking Center

“Seek Knowledge. Secure Freedom.”

Founded in 2002, the Human Trafficking Center (HTC) at the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver is one of the world’s leading nonprofit research and advocacy organizations working to combat human trafficking. The HTC’s mission is to train future leaders in the fight against human trafficking and conduct research aimed at providing a better understanding of forced labor and human trafficking with the hope of informing anti-trafficking policy and raising public awareness about the problem. The Human Trafficking Center continues to provide the only two-year graduate level training program in forced labor, human trafficking, and international labor migration issues in the U.S.


The HTC has established the “3 C’s” (Causes, Conditions, and Cures) in response to the U.N. Palermo Protocol’s “3 P’s” (Prevention, Protection, and Prosecution). We encourage and facilitate Cooperation (our “4th C”) among academic institutions and organizations creating and carrying out policy and working in the field. The HTC’s advocacy activities include policy analysis to provide policymakers with a deeper understanding of human trafficking issues as they craft laws to combat human trafficking and aid victims and survivors.While the HTC works with many different organizations, it does not ascribe to any particular political, social, or religious view other than the desire to end human trafficking, forced labor, and modern slavery.


How to cite

We have released the Human Trafficking Flow Map as a freely available public resource for all to use. However, we do ask if you use our platform in your analysis that you please credit our work by citing as follows:

Kaplan, Oliver, Jonathan Moyer, Claude d’Estrée and Joseph Ryan. 2015. “Human Trafficking Flow Map,” The Human Trafficking Center, University of Denver.