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Why Punish? The Twenty-first Annual Bill McWilliams Memorial Lecture by Prof Rob Canton Watch and listen again

last modified Jul 04, 2018 11:31 AM

Why Punish?  The 2018 Bill McWilliams Lecture.  Watch or Listen Again

The video and audio recording of Prof Rob Canton's lecture 'Why Punish?' are now available here


Dr Paolo Campana's new article on migrant smuggling now published

last modified Feb 09, 2017 02:20 PM

Dr Paolo Campana's paper on migrant smuggling is now published in Policing.

The public discourse on human smuggling into the European Union often evokes the presence of a few all powerful ‘Mr Bigs’ who are able to ‘mastermind’ illegal operations. This article takes a closer look at the recent trends in relation to two key smuggling routes—the Eastern and the Central Mediterranean—with the aim to identify the analytical and empirical features of the markets for smuggling services. It shows that these markets have the ability to expand considerably and often over a short period of time. It then argues that this is consistent with the presence of many competitive enterprises, low barriers to entry, low skills and (relatively) low capital requirements. This is a far cry from how the public discourse is often framed. The costs to the smugglers of monitoring agents and clients are also likely to be modest—particularly in comparison with human trafficking. The article concludes by discussing some policy implications, including the adoption of land-based policies (regarded as more effective than naval operations) and a suggestion for a change in the terminology adopted in policy and intelligence reports.

Human smugglers operate as 'independent traders'

last modified Feb 02, 2018 01:44 PM

Dr Paolo Campana's recently published research shows no “Mafia-like” monopoly of routes from Africa into Europe via the Mediterranean. Instead, myriad independent smugglers compete in open markets that have emerged at every stage of the journey.

You can read more about this research here.

Dr Campana's article is published in the European Journal of Criminology.  

Community Chaplaincy Research Features in Clinks blog

last modified Feb 08, 2017 06:17 PM

Clinks - the organisation that supports, represents and campaigns for the voluntary sector working with people in contact with the Criminal Justice System (CJS) in England and Wales - has published a blog featuring the research being undertaken by .

Read the blog here!

Families and Imprisonment Research Conference - new speakers announced

last modified May 28, 2019 05:02 PM

The Families and Imprisonment Research Study is holding a conference on 25 June 2019.

Recently announced and additional speakers include: Dr. Daniel McCarthy and Dr. Maria Adams, University of Surrey; Professor Peter Scharff-Smith, University of Oslo; Dr. Susie Hulley, University of Cambridge; Dr. Shona Minson, University of Oxford; Dr. Karen Souza, University of Cambridge and Dr. Kirsty Deacon, University of Glasgow

There is much more information about the FAIR Study and the conference here


Welcome to the Learning Together Summer Newsletter

last modified Jul 04, 2018 11:58 AM

The Learning Together team has produced a summer newsletter.

Click here to read about celebrations, new projects, get togethers and creativity.

Oh - and the opportunity to join them at the Great South Run in October.

Seeing a New Future - Community Chaplaincy and Desistance

last modified Nov 24, 2017 10:12 AM

Community Chaplaincy and Desistance: Seeing a New Future reports a study undertaken by Dr Jane Dominey and Dr Elizabeth Lowson at the CCGSJ for the Community Chaplaincy Association

The findings of the study include:

o The community chaplaincy ethos is expressed in practice that sees the intrinsic worth of each individual, is prepared to persevere, and remains committed to the possibility of future flourishing. This ethos is underpinned, for community chaplaincy, by the faith-based foundation of each organisation.

o Service users describe relationships with staff and volunteers that are genuine, helpful, reciprocal and caring; they compare these relationships favourably with those built with workers at other agencies. Personal and professional boundaries in community chaplaincy are not straightforward; for example, mentoring relationships are not friendships, but they are often experienced as ‘like friendships’.

o Key factors in the approach taken by community chaplaincy are the nature of the relationships that develop between service users, staff and volunteers, the broad range of practical help on offer, and the values that underpin the delivery of the service.

o The community chaplaincy approach is consistent with existing ideas about desistance focussed practice and service users describe how community chaplaincy helps them to move forward, keep out of trouble and see a new future.

The research identifies a number of good practice principles for the development of this work.

Prof Gelsthorpe contributes to the debate about women and sentencing

last modified Dec 21, 2017 11:55 AM

Loraine Gelsthorpe has a recent article entitled ‘Equal and Different’ in the ‘Scottish Justice Matters Journal: Women and Justice, Are We Making Progress?’  As noted by the Thematic Editor for this edition, Anne Pinkman, ‘collectively these articles have provided evidence of the substantial progress made over the past 5 years in working with women who become involved in the criminal justice system, and of the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead in both diverting women from coming into the criminal justice system and for those involved.’

Forthcoming CCGSJ events

last modified Nov 24, 2017 10:10 AM

The CCGSJ holds monthly lunchtime meetings - from 12.30pm to 2pm.

Tues 17 Oct: this will be a start of the year meeting - catching up with current research in progress in the Centre

Tues 14 Nov: CCGSJ reading group

Tues 12 Dec: Music in prison

Please contact for more information.

Growing Recognition for Learning Together

last modified Nov 15, 2016 04:06 PM

The Learning Together project, led by Dr Amy Ludlow and Dr Ruth Armstrong, is gaining recognition in a number of ways.

Amy and Ruth have received awards for the work at the staff recognition ceremony at HMP Grendon and HMP Spring Hill.  They are nominated for a Butler Trust award.

The work, and its impact on other universities and other prisons, is the focus of a recent article in The Guardian.

Learning Together November Newsletter

last modified Nov 06, 2017 03:43 PM

The Learning Together Team have published their November newsletter.

Invitation to the 22nd Annual Bill McWilliams Memorial Lecture

last modified Jan 29, 2019 04:00 PM

The twenty-second annual Bill McWilliams Memorial Lecture will be hosted by the Institute of Criminology, University of Cambridge on Friday 22 March 2019 at 12.30pm

Probation Vision and Values: Looking to the Future

There will be presentations from a distinguished panel of leading probation researchers and practitioners
Nicola Carr, Ioan Durnescu, Bronwen Elphick and Gwen Robinson

Click here for more information about the event and how to book your place.



Open Clasp Theatre Perform in Cambridge

last modified Nov 11, 2016 10:52 AM
Open Clasp Theatre Perform in Cambridge

Key Change at the Mumford

Open Clasp Theatre Company brought an intense and thought-provoking performance to the Mumford Theatre in Cambridge. Originally devised by women in HMP Low Newton and based on their stories, the play describes the lives of four women: Kelly, Lucy, Kim and Angie. With insightful scripting and stagecraft, it poignantly captures the violence, abuse, and insecurities of their earlier lives, the temporary relief and then burden of drug use, and the indignities, anxieties, violence, humour and affection of their everyday prison lives.  A powerful 60 minutes. Well worth seeing if you get the chance.

For more information, go to