News

ICPR wins public engagement award for its prisons research

26 Jul 2022

Birkbeck’s annual Public Engagement Awards recognise and celebrate researchers who have undertaken innovative and exemplary public engagement activities. ICPR has won this year’s Birkbeck Public Engagement award in the category of ‘public participation in research’. This category recognises projects in which the involvement of the public or various publics is an inherent part of the research process.

Bridging the gap between reformists and abolitionists: Can non-reformist reforms guide the work of prison inspectorates?

21 Mar 2022
Sarah Lamble

Dr Sarah Lamble is a Reader in Criminology and Queer Theory at the School of Law, Birkbeck and researches issues of gender, sexuality and imprisonment, as well as alternative forms of justice. Sarah is an organiser with Abolitionist Futures and a founding member of the Bent Bars Project, which coordinates a letter-writing programme for LGBTQ prisoners in Britain.

Here, Sarah reflects on Justice Edwin Cameron’s recent ICPR annual lecture, titled: 'Do prisons work? If not, do prisons inspectorates do more harm than good?’, applying the concept of ‘non-reformist’ reforms. This term, coined by Austrian philosopher André Gorz with reference to political economy, was further developed by prison abolitionists Thomas Mathieson and Angela Davis.

Prison populations continue to rise in many parts of the world, new report published by the Institute for Crime & Justice Policy Research shows.

01 Dec 2021

Some 11.5 million people are held in penal institutions throughout the world, according to the latest edition of the World Prison Population List (WPPL), researched and compiled by Helen Fair and Roy Walmsley and published on 1 December 2021 by the Institute for Crime & Justice Policy Research (ICPR), at Birkbeck, University of London.

Global partnership yields fresh insights on over-use of imprisonment

02 Jun 2021

What explains the world’s rising prisoner numbers? Does prison overcrowding impact public health? How has the pandemic affected prisoners and prisoner numbers? All countries use prison as a response to crime and disorder, but to vastly differing extents. Countries face similar dilemmas in how to deal effectively with crime, yet they make widely different policy choices in response – choices with huge societal impacts.

New research reveals devastating impact of pandemic on prisoners

18 May 2021

The prisons research team at the Institute for Crime & Justice Policy Research (ICPR) at Birkbeck, University of London has published new research on measures taken to control the risk of COVID-19 in prisons, and their impact on prisoners’ health and wellbeing. The research covers a diverse group of countries across five continents and includes first-hand accounts of how life in custody changed from March 2020.

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