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Investigating Intellectual Boundaries of Criminology


Description of Research Project: 

This is a multi-phase research agenda. The first phase involved a literature review ofmajor sociological and criminological journals and texts exploring the boundaries ofcriminology as an independent field.

The second, ongoing, phase involves a more specific investigation into the social forcesthat promote and constrain homicide. At present, our team is examining demographicand structural variables related to unsolved homicides (cold cases).


Description of work that will be assigned to research assistants:

RAs will begin by processing and in some cases calculating raw census data by countyof homicide. They will also assist in locating and analyzing police budgets for relevantcounties and years.

The full research team will have a bi-weekly roundtable meeting via Zoom to discussresults. Through the course of the project, RAs will receive training in researchmethods, data collection, and statistical analysis. They will also gain substantial familiarity with the existing body of literature on homicide.

This project is ongoing and, as possible, RAs could be offered future positions workingon data analysis of the social forces that are conducive to serial homicide.

Supervising Faculty Member: Fatma Müge Göçek

Project Coordinators: Albert Hawks & Karina McDonald-Lopez

Contact information: &

Average hours of work per week: ~10

Range of credit hours students can earn: 1-2 (Summer Term); 3-4 (Fall & WinterTerms)

Number of positions available: 3