Building Institutional Capacity: Knowledge Production for Transnational Security Governance in Mexico

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This article engages with institutionalist knowledge production in US-Mexican security relations, demonstrating how anti-crime governance in the Americas has shifted from a heavy-handed military rationale to a good governance and civil society–centred approach. This shift has been facilitated by the newly emerging resilience discourse which advocates turning local communities from passive beneficiaries of government-sponsored law enforcement into pro-active security partners. It will be argued that the rise of good governance and society-centred policy thinking has enhanced the epistemic authority of a heterogeneous, but ideologically aligned set of human rights advocacy groups, think tanks, policy-oriented academics and for-profit development NGOs – both in Mexico and the United States. This transnational expert community has been instrumental in inserting the issue of drug-related violent crime in Mexico into a globally dominant statebuilding framework. In consequence, security governance in Mexico has taken on a more transnational character and become the object of a highly intrusive international monitoring regime.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)211-227
Number of pages17
JournalGlobal Crime
Issue number3-4
Early online date29 May 2018
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Global Crime on 29/05/18 available online: 10.1080/17440572.2018.1477599

Copyright © and Moral Rights are retained by the author(s) and/ or other copyright owners. A copy can be downloaded for personal non-commercial research or study, without prior permission or charge. This item cannot be reproduced or quoted extensively from without first obtaining permission in writing from the copyright holder(s). The content must not be changed in any way or sold commercially in any format or medium without the formal permission of the copyright holders.


  • Intervention
  • Statebuilding
  • Mexico
  • Security governance
  • Organised crime


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