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Dr. Vanessa Neumann

Director | Senior Advisor

Dr. Vanessa Neumann

Neumann served for four years on the OECD Task Force on Countering Illicit Trade, and has been a consultant to UN Women on gender-based approaches to preventing and countering violent extremism. She is the author of the 2017 book Blood Profits: How American Consumers Unwittingly Fund Terrorists, as well as its 2018 Brazilian edition, Lucros de Sangue.

In the 1990s, Neumann worked as a journalist in Caracas for the English-language newspaper The Daily Journal, and then in corporate planning and finance at the Venezuelan petrochemical conglomerate Corimon, at the time of its listing on the New York Stock Exchange.

While pursuing her PhD, she volunteered for UNICEF for four years, beginning in 2001, raising funds from individual and corporate donors and traveling to Tanzania to coordinate with the local health administration on tetanus immunization.

At the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics (CAPPE) in Canberra, Australia, in 2006 she supported Thomas Pogge's research on reforming the global institutional order to alleviate extreme poverty. While working as an Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Hunter College, City University of New York, she was also an analyst at the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London, where she conducted research on security in Latin America, in particular on Venezuela's role as a safe haven and source of funding for Colombia's FARC guerrillas.

She was editor-in-chief of Diplomat, a British magazine on diplomacy in the UK and the EU. In 2009-2010, Neumann worked on the ground in Colombia on the reintegration of paramilitaries. In 2013, the year Vanessa Neumann, Inc. became Asymmetrica, Neumann was the academic reviewer for the U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM) teaching text on counterinsurgency in Colombia.

Neumann's academic talks focus on three areas of research:

  1. Venezuela:

  2. The Conduits of Crime and Terrorism.

  3. Foreign investment (mostly from China) in the Latin American energy sector, She is also a cited expert on the illicit financial flows of Chinese counterfeiting.

Neumann is the author of Blood Profits: How American Consumers Unwittingly Fund Terrorists has received support from Venezuelan opposition leaders in exile and cites organized crime carried out by the Maduro regime as the cause of economic collapse and human rights violations in her native Venezuela.

Neumann has published articles in The Wall Street Journal,The Daily Beast, The (London) Sunday Times, The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, The Weekly Standard, Standpoint and many other publications. She appears regularly on CNN, CNNE, Fox Business, Al Jazeera, NTN24, GloboTV and other networks. She is a regular guest on Varney & Co. She was once featured as a panelist by a State Department official. Her written work has been used by the American Enterprise Institute. Neumann's research on Venezuela and the conduits of crime and terrorism has been cited in Matthew Levitt's book Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon's Party of God (Washington, DC: Georgetown UP, 2013) and in Dirty Entanglements: Corruption, Crime and Terrorism (New York: Cambridge UP, 2014), among other works.

In 2010, Neumann founded his firm Asymmetrica in New York, which is part of the research network of the UN Security Council's Counter-Terrorism Executive Directorate.

On March 13, 2019, Dr. Neumann testified before the U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs as part of the Hearing on H.R. 1004: Venezuela Unauthorized Military Action Prohibition Act.

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