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Place Matters
Criminology for the Twenty-First Century


  • Date Published: April 2016
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107609495


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About the Authors
  • Over the last two decades, there has been increased interest in the distribution of crime and other antisocial behavior at lower levels of geography. The focus on micro geography and its contribution to the understanding and prevention of crime has been called the 'criminology of place'. It pushes scholars to examine small geographic areas within cities, often as small as addresses or street segments, for their contribution to crime. Here, the authors describe what is known about crime and place, providing the most up-to-date and comprehensive review available. Place Matters shows that the study of criminology of place should be a central focus of criminology in the twenty-first century. It creates a tremendous opportunity for advancing our understanding of crime, and for addressing it. The book brings together eighteen top scholars in criminology and place to provide comprehensive research expanding across different themes.

    • The book summarizes more than three decades of research on crime and place and provides a comprehensive review of what is known about the subject
    • With an extensive review across different themes within the subject matter, the book provides a variety of different perspectives
    • The book lays out an agenda for future research in crime and place, and therefore sets the groundwork for a future generation of studies
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Any serious criminologist needs to be thoroughly conversant with this outstanding book. Written by a team of leading scholars, it offers a criminology for the twenty-first century by showing that place is central to explaining and controlling crime.' Ron Clarke, Rutgers University, New Jersey

    'At a time when the criminological imagination is often blunted by an allegiance to increasingly dated theories, a focus on place promises to illuminate fresh ways of thinking about crime and novel avenues for empirical investigation. More importantly, a place perspective offers one of the few hopes for criminologists to contribute to the daunting challenge of reducing crime and saving lives. Indeed, Place Matters should become a standard course text – a volume used to enrich how the next generation of scholars and practitioners understands crime and its prevention.' Francis T. Cullen, University of Cincinnati

    'A brilliant and timely book … The authors cover the state of the art and future research for place-based research in an easily digestible form. Place Matters will, no doubt, become an instant classic and should be required reading for students and scholars in criminology.' Martin A. Andresen, Simon Fraser University, British Columbia

    'Place Matters … provides an orienting overview of the last three-plus decades of research and theory on spatial crime dynamics and patterns, argues forcefully for placing such work squarely in the spotlight of mainstream criminological theory, and challenges the next generation of scholars to use the crime concentration constant as an organizing guidepost for further theoretical, practical, and policy advancement … The volume is certain to inspire widespread discussion and reflection on the past, present and future of the field.' R. B. Taylor, Temple University, Philadelphia

    'Place Matters is a thought-provoking and essential read for everyone interested in the role of micro-environments in crime causation and prevention.' Per-Olof H. Wikström, FBA, University of Cambridge

    'The book … does not stint on theory, drawing for example on the pioneering sociologist Durkheim, and raises some discomforting questions for all of us.' Mark Rowe, Professional Security Magazine Online (

    'In Place Matters: Criminology for the Twenty-First Century, 18 leading criminologists have teamed to produce an accessible, tightly written account of this extraordinarily important insight. The book is a great contribution to the literature, and deserves to be carefully studied and widely read. … If scholars and law enforcement follow this research through to its natural conclusion, the results can be transformative. At the theoretical level, the research can bridge opportunity and social disorganization theories, which have hitherto provided radically different explanations for crime.' Joseph Margulies, Criminal Law and Criminal Justice Books (

    '… an up-to-date and authoritative review of findings concerning the role of place in crime …' Journal of Criminal Justice Education

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    Product details

    • Date Published: April 2016
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107609495
    • length: 200 pages
    • dimensions: 226 x 151 x 13 mm
    • weight: 0.32kg
    • contains: 29 b/w illus. 5 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Crime places within criminological thought
    2. The concentration of crime at place
    3. Theories of crime and place
    4. The importance of place in mainstream criminology and related fields: influences and lessons to be learned
    5. Methods of place-based research
    6. Reducing crime at high crime places: practice and evidence
    7. Crime places in the criminological imagination.

  • Authors

    David Weisburd, Hebrew University of Jerusalem and George Mason University, Virginia
    David Weisburd is a Distinguished Professor at George Mason University, Virginia and Director of the Center for Evidence-Based Crime Policy. He also holds a joint appointment as the Walter E. Meyer Professor of Law and Criminal Justice at the Hebrew University Faculty of Law in Jerusalem. He serves as the Chief Science Advisor at the Police Foundation in Washington DC and is Chair of its Research Advisory Committee. Weisburd is an elected Fellow of the American Society of Criminology and of the Academy of Experimental Criminology. He is the recipient of many prestigious honors and awards including the Stockholm Prize in Criminology 2010, the American Society of Criminology's Sutherland Award in 2014, and the 2015 Israel Prize in Criminology. He has also been selected as the recipient of the American Society of Criminology's 2017 August Vollmer Award.

    John E. Eck, University of Cincinnati
    John E. Eck is Professor of Criminal Justice at the University of Cincinnati. He has conducted research on policing, crime places, and crime prevention since 1977. He is a former Research Director for the Police Executive Research Forum. There, he studied investigative operations, police anti-drug strategies, and helped field test and develop a problem-oriented approach to policing. Eck's Ph.D. dissertation (University of Maryland, 1994) developed the idea of 'place management'. He joined the faculty of the School of Criminal Justice at the University of Cincinnati in 1998.

    Anthony A. Braga, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Massachusetts
    Anthony A. Braga is the Don M. Gottfredson Professor of Evidence-Based Criminology at Rutgers University and a Senior Research Fellow in the Program in Criminal Justice Policy and Management at Harvard University, Massachusetts. Between 2007 and 2013, Braga served as the Chief Policy Advisor to Commissioner Edward F. Davis of the Boston Police Department. His work with the Boston Police Department on its Safe Street Teams program was recognized by the International Association of Chiefs of Police with its Community Policing Award (2011) and Excellence in Law Enforcement Research Award (2011).

    Cody W. Telep, Arizona State University
    Cody Telep is an Assistant Professor in the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Arizona State University. He received his Ph.D. from the Department of Criminology, Law, and Society at George Mason University, where he worked at the Center for Evidence-Based Crime Policy. His research interests include evaluating policing innovations, police legitimacy, evidence-based policy, and experimental criminology. He is the Secretary-Treasurer for the American Society of Criminology's Division of Policing.

    Breanne Cave, George Mason University, Virginia
    Breanne Cave is a doctoral candidate at George Mason University, Virginia and a member of the Center for Evidence-Based Crime Policy. Her research interests focus on policing, crime and place, research translation, and security issues. She was awarded the Presidential Fellowship and Dean's Challenge Award at George Mason University. Prior to beginning her studies at George Mason, she served for four years with the United States Marine Corps.

    Kate Bowers, University College London
    Kate Bowers is a Professor of Security and Crime Science at the University College London Department of Security and Crime Science. She has published over eighty papers and book chapters. She serves on a number of journal editorial boards and has a number of external appointments such as acting independent expert for the European Commission and expert reviewer for the US Office of the Assistant Attorney General. Her work has been funded by the Home Office, the US Department of Justice, UK Police Forces, the Department for Education and Skills, and UK research councils EPSRC, ESRC and AHRC.

    Gerben Bruinsma, VU University Amsterdam
    Professor Dr Gerben Bruinsma was, from 1999 until August 2014, director of the Netherlands Institute for the Study of Crime and Law Enforcement (NSCR) in Amsterdam, a national research institute of the National Organization for Scientific Research (NWO) and, is currently senior researcher of that institute. He is also Professor of Environmental Criminology at VU University of Amsterdam (from 2009). He presently serves as President of the European Society of Criminology. He published in Criminology, Crime and Delinquency, the Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency, the British Journal of Criminology, Policing and the European Journal of Criminology. With David Weisburd, he edited The Encyclopedia of Criminology and Criminal Justice.

    Charlotte Gill, George Mason University, Virginia
    Dr Charlotte Gill is an Assistant Professor at George Mason University, Virginia and holds degrees in Criminology and Law from the Universities of Pennsylvania and Cambridge. Her primary research interests are community-based crime prevention and place-based approaches, particularly with juveniles and youth; community policing; program evaluation, including randomized controlled trials; and research synthesis. In 2012, she received the Academy of Experimental Criminology's Young Experimental Scholar Award. Dr Gill's current research involves pilot studies of social and community building interventions at hot spots. She is also the co-editor of the Campbell Collaboration Crime and Justice Group.

    Elizabeth R. Groff, Temple University, Philadelphia
    Elizabeth Groff is an Associate Professor in the Criminal Justice Department at Temple University. She is an applied researcher who was the first GIS Coordinator at the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department and a former Director of the National Institute of Justice's Crime Mapping Research Center. Her research interests include place-based criminology, modelling geographical influences on human activity, the role of technology in police organizations, and the development of innovative methodologies using geographic information systems, agent-based simulation models, and randomized experiments. She became a Fellow of the Academy of Experimental Criminology in 2010.

    Julie Hibdon, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale
    Julie Hibdon is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Southern Illinois University. She received her Ph.D. in Criminology, Law, and Society from George Mason University, Virginia in 2011. Her research interests include crime and place, environmental criminology, cognitions of crime places, fear of crime, and policing.

    Joshua C. Hinkle, Georgia State University
    Dr Joshua C. Hinkle is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology at Georgia State University. He received his doctoral degree in criminology and criminal justice from the University of Maryland in the summer of 2009 after completing his master's degree in May 2005. His research interests include evidence-based policing, the disorder-crime nexus, fear of crime, and experimental methods. His research has been funded by the National Institute of Justice and the National Science Foundation. His work appears in journals such as Criminology, Criminology and Public Policy, and the Journal of Experimental Criminology.

    Shane D. Johnson, University College London
    Professor Shane D. Johnson has worked within the fields of criminology and forensic psychology for over fifteen years. He has particular interests in exploring how methods from other disciplines (e.g. complexity science) can inform understanding of crime and security issues, and the extent to which theories developed to explain everyday crimes can explain more extreme events such as riots, maritime piracy, and insurgency. He has published over ninety peer-reviewed papers and book chapters and his work has been covered in The Economist, New Scientist, and by the UK press.

    Brian Lawton, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York

    Cynthia Lum, George Mason University, Virginia

    Jerry H. Ratcliffe, Temple University, Philadelphia

    George Rengert, Temple University, Philadelphia

    Travis Taniguchi, RTI International, North Carolina

    Sue-Ming Yang, George Mason University, Virginia

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