ICPR's latest book 'Inside Crown Court' is published
Research conducted by Jessica Jacobson, Gillian Hunter
and Amy Kirby at
the Institute for Policy Research (ICPR) at Birkbeck, University of
London has found that appearing in the Crown Court - as a victim,
witness or defendant - is often frightening, frustrating and
upsetting for participants. The study provides a vivid description
of what it is like to attend Crown Court, be it as a victim,
defendant, witness, member of staff, judge or barrister. It
outlines the interplay between the various participants and extent
to which the court process is viewed as legitimate by those
involved in it. The book will be launched this evening in the Royal
Courts of Justice.
Review of advocacy in youth proceedings
The Institute for Criminal Policy Research has been commissioned
by the Bar Standards Board, in association with Illex Professional
Standards, to conduct a research review of the components of
effective advocacy in youth proceedings. The research will explore
what knowledge, skills and attributes are required by advocates in
youth proceedings to work effectively with defendants and witnesses
and assess the extent to which advocates possess these knowledge,
skills and attributes.
Dr Jessica Jacobson, Co-Director of the Institute for Criminal
Policy Research, said: 'We are delighted to be conducting this
important project on behalf of the Bar Standards Board and Ilex
Professional Standards. Little systematic research has been
conducted to date on the components of effective advocacy in youth
proceedings. This project will help to fill this large knowledge
gap with the aim of informing real and sustainable improvements in
Is volunteering for everyone? Volunteering opportunities for
young adults with offending historties.
The Institute for Criminal Policy Research (ICPR) in partnership
with the Institute for Volunteering Research (IVR) have recently
concluded a Paul Hamlyn Foundation and Barrow Cadbury Trust funded
study of volunteering opportunities for young adults with criminal
convictions. As part of the study, a series of briefing papers has
been produced to promote volunteering, bust myths and help to
address some of the barriers to volunteering opportunities for
young adults with offending histories. There are three separate
electronic briefings aimed at: young adults; volunteer-involving
organisations; and resettlement organisations. There is also a
number of printed copies of the young adults briefing available; if
you would like to obtain any printed copies, please contact Amy Kirby.
The briefings can be accessed using the following links:
Young adults briefing
Young Criminologist Award 2014 - Dr Mai Sato
Sato has been awarded the Young Criminologist Award 2014 for
her book 'The Death Penalty in Japan: Will the Public Tolerate
Abolition?' The award ceremony took place on 18 October 2014 at the
41st Japanese Association of Sociological Criminology Conference in
Justice that kills - the death penalty in the 21st century
"Instead of measuring support for the death penalty, we should
measure public tolerance and acceptance of abolition. If the public
views an abolition of the death penalty as legitimate it can be
done with appropriate leadership."
Dr Mai Sato,
speaking at the Delegation to the UN and other international
organisations in Geneva, October 2014.
The death penalty and procedural guarantees in Japan
Dr Mai Sato
in collaboration with Dr Paul Bacon (University of Japan) has been
awarded multi-agency funding (EU, German Embassy, UK Embassy, and
the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office) to conduct a survey and a
deliberative poll on the death penalty and procedural guarantees in
Japan. The project will run from June 2014 - August 2015.
Howard League 'What is Justice?' working papers
The Howard League for Penal Reform has launched a series
papersbased on conference presentations from contributors at
the Howard League's 'What is Justice? Re-imagining penal policy'
conference. Researchers at ICPR have co-authored three of the
Kirby, Jessica Jacobson and Gillian Hunter
present the findings of a 20 month Economic and Social Research
Council funded study into the public's experiences of the Crown
Court. A key finding of the research - and the focus of the paper -
was the apparent limits of defendants' 'effective participation' at
Polly Radcliffe and Gillian Hunter discuss the development
of Women's Community Services (WCSs) and explore themes emerging
from interviews with 30 women attending six WCUs between April 2011
and April 2012.
Penelope Gibbs and Amy Kirby discuss the diversity of lay
magistrates in England and Wales and question the
representativeness of lay magistrates in their locality by
analysing existing evidence on the lay magistracy's composition and
linking that to trends in the recruitment of magistrates.
Youth courts failing children, finds parliamentarians'
A report published today by a cross party group of MPs and
peers, calls for urgent reforms to the youth justice system
following an in depth inquiry which found systemic failings and an
inability to prevent youth offending. The inquiry by Lord Carlile
CBE QC was launched amid growing concerns that the criminal and
youth courts do not, in their current form, effectively fulfill
their principal aims of preventing youth reoffending and having
adequate regard to the welfare of the child. The report was
prepared and drafted by ICPR's Ali Wigzell.
The report has been covered by:
4 (53 minutes in)
BBC London radio
ITV Lunchtime news
ICPR briefings published on The Advocate's Gateway
Two ICPR briefings, based on the findings of our recent
ESRC-funded research on the Crown Court, have been published on The
Advocate's Gateway website.
'Supporting Fair and Respectful Treatment of Witnesses' provides
advocates and other court-based professionals with insight into
what it is like to attend a criminal court as a witness, and what
it means - from the witness's perspective - to be treated well or,
conversely, treated poorly. 'Supporting the Effective Participation
of Defendants at Court' identifies some of the main barriers to
defendants' effective participation in the court process, and
considers how advocates and other legal professionals can help to
overcome these barriers.
more - witness briefing.
Read more - defendant briefing.
Research into community justice
ICPR's recently published report, 'Crime and "community"',
presents the findings of research into the concept and application
of 'community justice.' The research - which was generously funded
by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation - entailed a policy review, a
review of existing data on civic particpation, and empirical
research on community activism in four deprived neighbourhoods.
Drawing on the findings of this research, the report looks at how
central government views the role of local communities in tackling
crime and disorder; how members of local communities view their own
role in tackling crime and disorder; and the extent to which
government aspirations for 'community justice' have resonance for
the general public. The report's major conclusion is that
'community justice' is a worthwhile policy aspiration, if this is
largely conceived as a matter of nurturing community spirit and
concomitant informal social control - but the goal of promoting
local communities' active involvement in the design or delivery of
criminal justice services is much more difficult to achieve.
In March 2014 Dr Tim McSweeney was awarded his PhD - without
amendments - by the University of New South Wales (UNSW) in Sydney,
Australia. The thesis used comparative case studies in order to
examine the processes and impacts in Australia and England of
attempts to divert criminally involved drug misusers to
Book Launch at the House of Lords
On 13th January 2014 The All Party Parliamentary Group on the
Abolition of the Death Penalty launched Dr Mai Sato's
recently published book, 'The Death Penalty in Japan: Will the
public tolerate abolition?'
The book examines factors underlining the presumed support for
the death penalty, offering a critique of the Japanese Government
Survey and the impact of information and deliberation on people's
understanding of, and attitudes towards, the death penalty.
The event was hosted by Baroness Vivien Stern and speakers
included Professor Carolyn Hoyle (Director, Centre for Criminology,
University of Oxford) and Dr Mai Sato, who gave a brief synopsis of