Publications & Team

Current Research

Jessica is engaged in a range of research activities. Her role includes overseeing the development of the World Prison Research Programme: this is a new programme of international comparative research on prisons and imprisonment. The programme will build on the work of the World Prison Brief, which is an online database providing details on the prison systems of over 220 independent countries and dependent territories. Much of Jessica's other work focuses on the criminal courts. Among her recently completed projects is a study on the on the application of the doctrine of 'joint enterprise' in the prosecution of serious offences.

Background and Expertise

Jessica has a BA degree in sociology from Trinity College Dublin and a PhD in sociology from the London School of Economics. Her thesis was on the subject of ethnic and religious identities among second-generation British Pakistanis (published by Routledge as Islam in Transition in 1998).

Jessica has developed her expertise in criminal justice research since working as a Research Officer, and then Senior Research Officer, for the Home Office from 1997 to 2000. She has experience of researching many different aspects of the criminal justice system; particular interests include prisons; sentencing and the work of the criminal courts more broadly; and youth justice. Her recent publications include Inside Crown Court (with Gillian Hunter and Amy Kirby), published by Policy Press in 2015, which discusses the experiences of victims, witnesses and defendants at court.


Mitigation: the role of personal factors in sentencing

Anti-Social Behaviour Strategies: Finding a balance

Anti-Social Behaviour in London: Setting the context for the London Anti-Social Behaviour Strategy

Tackling Anti-Social Behaviour: A Critical Review

Getting to grips with anti-social behaviour

  • Author(s) Hough, M. and Jacobson, J.
  • SubjectCrime and the community
  • Year2004
  • LocationLondon
  • Publisher/PublicationSmith Institute
  • Misc infoIn J. Grieve and R. Howard (eds.) Communities, Social Exclusion and Crime

Abandoned vehicles in England: Impact of the End of Life Directive and new initiatives on likely future trends

  • Author(s) Smith, M., Jacobson, J. and Webb, B.
  • SubjectCriminal justice agencies and services
  • Year2004
  • LocationUK
  • Publisher/PublicationResources, Conservation and Recycling, 41, 177-189

Sentencer confidence in probation: a good job in difficult circumstances?

  • Author(s) Millie, A. and Jacobson, J.
  • SubjectCourts, sentencing and attitudes to justice
  • Year2004
  • Publisher/PublicationVista: Perceptions on Probation, Criminal Justice and Civil Renewal, 9(2): 112-117

Understanding the growth in the prison population in England and Wales

  • Author(s) Millie, A., Jacobson, J. and Hough, M.
  • SubjectCriminal justice agencies and services
  • Year2003
  • LocationUK
  • Publisher/PublicationCriminal Justice, 3(4): 369-387

The Reducing Burglary Initiative: Planning for Partnership

Tackling Abandoned and Untaxed Vehicles: An Evaluation of Operation Cubit