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Future Directions in Criminology “you can never plan the future by the past” – Edmund Burke (1729- 1797)

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Presentation on theme: "Future Directions in Criminology “you can never plan the future by the past” – Edmund Burke (1729- 1797)"— Presentation transcript:


2 Future Directions in Criminology “you can never plan the future by the past” – Edmund Burke (1729- 1797)

3 Introduction  Criminology’s attempt to bridge theory and practice  Post-positivism and post-modernism, and the discipline in a state of flux  ? Can we merge criminal justice and criminology  Continuing challenge of being relative and evolutive

4  Frame of Reference  Ultimate objective “controlology”  Utilitarian principles  FOUR approaches:  conservative  Liberal  Radical  Integrated and interdisciplinary

5  Conservative approach:  Social control over individual freedoms, policing, just deserts, focus on conventional crime…  ? Not ‘humanistic’  Greater emphasis in political and power-based issues  Can law and order control crime?

6  Liberal approach:  Crime the product of social and economic circumstances, lack of opportunities, emphasize treatment and rehabilitation…  Although popular in recent years only marginally successful  Radical approach:  Reliance on unofficial sources, role of media and competing interest groups, power of capitalism, shift from offender to system…  Short on solutions but helps to draw attention to broader issues

7  Interdisciplinary:  Crime a product of human behaviour… individual and his/her environment, ‘soft-determinism’,  Attempt to reconcile differences between C, L, and R approaches  Bridge current fragmentation  BUT ‘growing pains’  Can we move from legalistic to humanistic-based discipline?

8 Criminology and Prediction  The price of prediction… risky  Complexity of human behaviour  ? Need for fundamental paradigm And theoretical shifts  Can an integrated and interdisciplinary offer a clearer direction?

9 Comparative Criminology  Practicalities being overcome  Advances in technology and methodology  Fattah and our ‘provincial attitudes’ slow to fade  Transnational crimes and price of globalization  Move beyond descriptive to a theoretical framework

10  “Standard Minimum Rules for the Administration of Juvenile Justice” and Interpol examples of international co-operation  Justification:  Experience of others;  Broaden our understanding; and  International co-operation to common concerns  Will comparative criminology play a primary role in the future?

11 The Knowledge Explosion  An expansive discipline… “criminological enterprise”  Number of disciplines with vested interest growing  Growing number of theories  Number of textbooks (CDN) and journals  Relative soundness of the discipline

12  The disciplines ‘growth’ has NOT been matched by a decrease in crime rates!  Is there a need for a paradigm shift?  Causes of crime and criminality linked to multicausality…integrated and interdisciplinary The Future of Crime  Automobiles vs. credit cards… and the role of technology and opportunity for ‘new’ crimes  E.g.: debit cards and ‘crime wave’

13  Possible future trends….  Computer based crimes  International sex trade, organ trade, smuggling of illegal foreigners  Transnationally based organized crime  Transnational corporate crime  International terrorism, money laundering,…  Will our current theories suffice to explain the new trends/

14 Social Control: Prevention or Punishment  Crime costs up; victim expenses up; and incarceration up… need for cost-effective strategies  Figure 14-1 “what works”  Communities: community-based mentoring  Family-based prevention: early infant & pre-school programs  School-based programs: innovative programs

15  Policing: presence at “hot spots’  CJS: rehabilitation  Importance of multiple risk factors  Developmental pathways  Opportunity reduction and social development  Primary vs. secondary vs. tertiary prevention  Bridging theory and practice… e.g., shaming, restorative justice, etc.

16 Criminology and Criminal Law  Definition of crime dependent on its legal definition  How did criminal law evolve and how will it evolve?  Criminal law minimal impact on curbing crime  Does the law inflate crime statistics?  We need to rethink the role of law in crime prevention

17 Expanding the Scope of Criminology  Role of science and technology vs. the role of criminal law  Expanding opportunities  Crime: The Elusive Enigma  Crime waves “mental filters through which social issues are filtered”  Must learn to discern myths from reality

18  Restorative Justice  An answer to punishment?  Shift from moral to social responsibility… respect ALL parties  An old concept in new attire!? Will it work this time?  SUMMARY  “…the longing for love, the search for knowledge, and the unbearable pity for the suffering of mankind”, and search for spiritual growth.  Constructive social policy with a global social context

19 … the gauntlet before you

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