Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs

The Buzz on Sex, Drugs, and Body Counts

October 27, 2010

Reporters and commentators on- and off-campus continue to take note of Peter Andreas’s recently co-edited Sex, Drugs, and Body Counts: The Politics of Numbers in Global Crime and Conflict, in the wake of a rave review in Slate and airing on NPR's On the Media.

As Foreign Policy commentator Daniel W. Drezner wrote, “Having worked a bit on money laundering, I'm keenly aware of the ways in which bulls**t statistics become accepted as fact. If some authoritative figure pulls a number out of thin air, the media will often repeat it to the point where it becomes gospel. Andreas and Greenhill's edited volume takes a hard look at how some of these figures affect public policy debates.”

You can read a “fact or fiction?” account in Brown Alumni Monthly, read an interview with Andreas in Today at Brown, and see his statistical analysis in context on PBS’s Regarding War blog.