Criminology’s Place in the Academic Field

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


This chapter argues that criminology will tend to become more inward-looking and will lose its vital connection to the more basic disciplines as it grows more autonomous, institutionally and intellectually; as it increasingly trains recruits by immersing them primarily in its own literature; as its practitioners focus more and more on criminology's own research agendas; and as they proceed to publish only in its own journals. The possibility of an ‘independent’ criminology ought to be regarded as a temptation to be resisted rather than a goal to be embraced. Instead of aspiring to an autonomous discipline, those of us who conduct criminological research and scholarship should work for a criminology that is intellectually and institutionally integrated in the wider university. It advocates a vision of criminology that would operate as a multi-disciplinary, policy-oriented subject, addressing problems of crime, criminal justice, security, and punishment in a variety of ways and drawing upon a range of academic disciplines.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationWhat is Criminology?
EditorsMary Bosworth, Carolyn Hoyle
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Print)9780199659920
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • criminology
  • criminological research
  • academic disciplines
  • punishment
  • security


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