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Crime and policing go under the spotlight

27 June 2009

Crime photography

Renowned author Phillip Sands who exposed how high ranking members of the Bush administration were involved in authorising torture and subsequently attempted to cover their tracks, in his book Torture Team, will be among a number of headline speakers at an international criminology conference hosted by the University this week.

From 29 June to 1 July, the international best-selling author will be joined by prisons inspector and human rights activist Dame Anne Owers to discuss preventing torture and honouring international human rights obligations at the British Society of Criminology Conference 2009, hosted by the Universities’ Police Science Institute, the Crime and Justice Research Group at Cardiff and the Centre for Criminology at the University of Glamorgan. The Institute combines the University’s outstanding research capabilities, with the University of Glamorgan’s expertise in training, providing exceptional education opportunities for officers.

They will be just two of more than 300 speakers taking part in the annual conference which is being held in Cardiff. Other speakers include Mike Hough, President of the British Society of Criminology, Professor Lawrence Sherman, Wolfson Professor of Criminology at Cambridge University and Professor Gary Marx from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

A Mirror or a Motor? What is Criminology For? will be opened by Chief Constable of South Wales Police Barbara Wilding. It will launch three days of presentations by some of the biggest names in criminological research from across the world. Leading academics, researchers and practitioners in the fields of crime and justice will be discussing the future of criminology as a discipline and how it impacts on public policy today and in the future. Topics from surveillance, counter-terrorism policing and neighborhood policing to community safety, alcohol, drugs and crime will come under the spotlight.

Martin Innes, Director of the Universities' Police Science Institute said: "Today marks the start of one of the most prestigious events in the international calendar for researchers in the field of Criminology and Community Safety – its overarching aim is to ensure that our work is of utmost relevance to those front line service providers who are delivering crime prevention services.

"Criminology as an academic discipline has undergone significant and rapid development in recent years as recognition of the role it plays in shaping policy and practice grows, and it is important that we take a step back and evaluate how we keep our work relevant – this conference provides a vital platform."

Stanley Cohen who coined the term ‘moral panic’ and whose work is widely regarded as the most influential work in the field in the last forty years will be receiving a lifetime achievement award from the British Society of Criminology at the event.

The Universities’ Police Science Institute aims to increase professionalism in the police service and is the first institution of its kind, integrating police research, policy and operations. The conference has been organised in partnership with the Centre for Criminology at the University of Glamorgan and the Crime and Justice Research Group within the School of Social Sciences.

More than 400 delegates from across the world are expected at the conference at Cardiff’s City Hall.

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