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International Journal for Crime, Justice and Social Democracy

Reach and Relevance of Prison Research


In this contribution I reflect on the changes in the penal landscape and how they impact on prison research. I do this from my experiences as a prison researcher in a variety of roles, in both Europe and Australia. The growing dominance of managerialism has impacted on both corrective services and universities, in ways that have changed the relationship between current prison practices and academically oriented research. Therefore, academics have to question how their contemporary prison research can bridge the emerging gap: how they can not only produce research that adheres to the roots of criminology and provides a base for a rational penal policy, but also how they can develop strategies to get recognition of and funding for this broader contextual work which, although it might not produce results that are immediately identifiable, can be of relevance in indirect ways and in the longer term.
Pages:4 to 17
Section: Articles


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Author Biography

The University of Western Australia
Australia Australia

Future Fellow, Crime Research Centre, UWA.

Recipient in 2011 of an ARC Future Fellowship for four years to work on the project: “Reducing imprisonment rates in Australia: International experiences, marginal populations and a focus on the over-representation of Indigenous people” (FT100100627).

Open Access Journal
ISSN 2202-8005