skip to content

Prisons Research Centre


Please find below a list of our most recent publications



Crewe, B., Schliehe, A., & Przybylska, D. A. (2023). 'It causes a lot of problems': Relational ambiguities and dynamics between prisoners and staff in a women's prison. European Journal of Criminology, 20(3), p.925-946.

Crewe, B., Laursen, J., & Mjåland, K. (2023). Comparing deep‐end confinement in England & Wales and Norway. Criminology, 61(2), p.204-233.

Crewe, B., Ievins, A., Larmour, S., Laursen, J., Mjåland, K., & Schliehe, A. (2023). Nordic penal exceptionalism: A comparative, empirical analysis. The British Journal of Criminology, 63(2), p.424-443.

Ellis, S. (2023). IPP Research Briefing. Unpublished briefing produced for House of Lords.

Ellis, S. (2023). IPP Statistical Bulletin 2022-23. UNGRIPP.

Ellis, S. (2023). Justice Select Committee Inquiry: Guide for People Serving IPP. UNGRIPP.

Herrity, K., & Warr, J. J. (2023). "This is My Home": The Prison as a Site of Domicide-through-displacement. In P. Davies & M. Rowe (eds.), Criminology of the Domestic. Routledge Studies in Crime, Justice and the Family.

Joliffe, D., & Auty, K. M. (2023). Developmental and Life-course Criminology. In A. Liebling, S. Maruna, & L. McAra (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Criminology.

Liebling, A., Maruna, S., & McAra, L. (eds.). (2023). The Oxford Handbook of Criminology (7th ed.). Oxford University Press.

Rennie, A., & Crewe, B. (2023). 'Tightness', autonomy and release: The anticipated pains of release and life licensing. The British Journal of Criminology, 63(1), p.184-200.

Wright, S., Hulley, S., & Crewe, B. (2023). Trajectories of hope/lessness among men and women in the late stage of a life sentence. Theoretical Criminology, 27(1), p.66-84.


Auty, K. M., Farrington, D. P., & Coid, J. W. (2022). Intergenerational transmission of personality disorder severity and the role of psychosocial risk factors. Criminal Behaviour and Mental Health, 32(1), p.5-20. DOI:10.1002/cbm.2225

Auty, K. M., Liebling, A., Schliehe, A., & Crewe, B. (2022). What is Trauma-informed Practice? Towards Operationalisation of the Concept in Two Prisons for Women. Criminology & Criminal Justice.

Cornmell, E., & Crewe, B. (2022) Prisons in pandemic and recovery. Prison Service Journal, 259

Crewe, B., Goldsmith, A., & Halsey, M. (2022). Power and Pain in the Modern Prison: The Society of Captives Revisited. Oxford University Press.

Ellis, S. [+49 others] (2022). Justice Select Committee Inquiry into the IPP Sentence: Joint Submission from Psychologists.

Herrity, K., Schmidt, B., & Warr, J. J. (2022). Sensory "Heteroglossia" and Social Control: Sensory Methodology and Method. In M. Dodge & R. Faria (eds.), Qualitative Research in Criminology: Cutting Edge Methods. Springer.

Hulley, S., & Young, T. (2022). Body Map Storytelling: Exploring Identity with Lifers Convicted of Murder Using the Doctrine of 'Joint Enterprise'. Prison Service Journal: Special Issue on Life Imprisonment.

Hulley, S., & Wright, S. (2022). Editorial Comment. Prison Service Journal: Special Issue on Life Imprisonment.

Liebling, A. (2022). Penal Legitimacy, Well-being, and Trust: The Role of Empirical Research in 'Morally Serious' Work. In A. Liebling, J. Shapland, R. Sparks, & J. Tankebe (eds.), Crime, Justice, and Social Order: Essays in Honour of A. E. Bottoms (pp. 273-302). Oxford University Press.

Liebling, A. (2022). The Changing 'Regime of the Custodians': Visions of Order and Authority in High Security Prisons in England and Wales, 1988-2019. In B. Crewe, A. Goldsmith, & M. Halsey (Eds.), Power and Pain in the Modern Prison: Revisiting the Society of Captives (pp. 253-272). Oxford University Press.

Liebling, A., Auty, K. M., Gardom, J., & Lieber, E. (2022). An evaluation of the meaning and impact of Shared Reading in Psychologically Informed Planned Environments in prisons. Ministry of Justice Analytical Series. Ministry of Justice: London.

Schliehe, A., Laursen, J., & Crewe, B. (2022). Loneliness in prison. European Journal of Criminology, 19(6), p.1595-1614.

Williams, R., & Liebling, A. (2022). Do Prisons Cause Radicalisation? Order, Leadership, Political Charge and Violence in Two Maximum Security Prisons. British Journal of Criminology, 63(1), p.97–114.

Wright, S., Hulley, S., & Crewe, B. (2022). The Challenges of Long Life Imprisonment from a Young Age. Prison Service Journal: Special Issue on Life Imprisonment.

Zahid & Hulley, S. (2022). Approaching the End: Interview with Zahid on the Process of Being Released from Custody on a Life Sentence. Prison Service Journal: Special Issue on Life Imprisonment.


Schliehe, A. & Crewe, B. (2021) Top bunk, bottom bunk: cellsharing in prisons.  The British Journal of Criminology.

Ievins, A., & Mjåland, K. (2021) Authoritarian exclusion and laissez-faire inclusion: Comparing the punishment of men convicted of sex offenses in England & Wales and Norway. Criminology.

Laws, B. (2021). Segregation Seekers: an Alternative Perspective on the Solitary Confinement Debate.The British Journal of Criminology.

Liebling, A., Schmidt, B. E., Beyens, K., Boone, M., Johnsen, B., Kox, M., Rokkan, T., & Vanhouche, A-S. (2021). ‘Doing Team Ethnography in a Transnational Prison’. International Criminology.

Auty, K. (2021). Mediation in Prison.  In M Farias, D. Brazier & M Lalljee (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Mediation. Oxford University Press.

Hulley, S., & Young, T. (2021). Silence, joint enterprise and the legal trap.  Criminology & Criminal Justice.

Fraser, A., & Schliehe, A. (2021). The Carceral City: Confinement and Order in Hong Kong’s Forbidden Enclave. The British Journal of Criminology.


Auty, K., & Liebling, A. (2020) 'Exploring the Relationship between Prison Social Climate and Reoffending'. Justice Quarterly, 37(2), p.358-381.

Brown, E. (2020) 'A systematic review of the effects of prison segregation'. Aggression and Violent Behavior 

Crewe, B. (2020) 'The depth of imprisonment'. Punishment & Society.

Crewe, B., & Ievins, A. (2020) 'Tightness, recognition and penal power'. Punishment & Society.

Bickers, I., Crewe, B., & Mitchell, R. (2020) 'Offender Supervision, Prisoners and Procedural Justice', The Howard Journal of Crime and Justice, 58(4), p.477-495.

Henriksen, A.K., & Schliehe, A. (2020) 'Ethnography of young people in confinement – on subjectivity, positionality and situated ethics in closed space'. Qualitative Research.  

Ievins, A. (2020) ''Perfectly individualized and constantly visible'? Lateral tightness in a prison holding men convicted of sex offences', Incarceration: An international journal of imprisonment, detention and coercive confinement.

Jarman, B. (2020) 'Only one way to swim? The offence and the life course in accounts of adaptation to life imprisonment'. British Journal of Criminology

Jewkes, Y., & Laws, B. (in press). 'Liminality revisited: mapping the emotional adaptations of women in carceral space'. Punishment & Society

Laursen, J., Mjåland, K., & Crewe, B. (2020) '"It's Like a Sentence Before the Sentence": Exploring the Pains and Possibilities of Waiting for Imprisonment', British Journal of Criminology, 60(2), p.363-381.

Laws, B. (2020) 'Reimaging 'the self' in criminology: Transcendence, unconscious states and the limits of narrative criminology'. Theoretical Criminology

Laws, B., & Lieber E. (2020) 'King, Warrior, Magician & Lover: Understanding expressions of care among male prisoners'. European Journal of Criminology

Liebling, A., Johnsen, B., Schmidt, B.E., Rokkan, T., Beyens, K., Boone, M., Kox, K., & Vanhouche, A.S. (2020) 'Where two 'exceptional' prison cultures meet: Negotiating order in a transnational prison'. British Journal of Criminology.

Liebling, A., Williams, R., & Lieber, E. (2020) 'More Mind Games: How 'The Action' and 'The Odds' have Changed in Prison'. British Journal of Criminology.

Young, T., Hulley, S. and Pritchard, G. (2020) 'A "Good Job" in Difficult Conditions: Detectives' Reflections, Decisions and Discriminations in the Context of 'Joint Enterprise''. Theoretical Criminology, 24(3), p.461-481.


Auty, K., (2019). Meditation in Prison. In M. Farias, D. Brazier & M. Lalljee (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Meditation, Oxford: OUP.

Auty, K., (2019). Mindfulness-Based Interventions in the Criminal Justice System. In H. Graham, F. McNeill, P. Raynor, F. Taxman, C. Trotter, & P. Ugwudike (eds.), The Routledge Companion to Rehabilitative Work in Criminal Justice. London: Routledge.

Crewe, B., & Ievins, A. (2019) The prison as a reinventive institution. Theoretical Criminology, 1-22,

Bickers, I., Crewe, B., & Mitchell, R. (2019) Offender Supervision, Prisoners and Procedural Justice. The Howard Journal of Crime and Justice.

Hulley, S., Crewe, B., & Wright, S. (2019) Making sense of ‘Joint Enterprise’ for murder: legal legitimacy or instrumental acquiescence? British Journal of Criminology.

Ievins, A. (2019) 'Finding victims in the narratives of men convicted of sex offences?' In J. Fleetwood, L. Presser, S. Sandberg & T. Ugelvik (eds.), Doing Narrative Criminology. Bingley: Emerald.

Ievins, A. (2019) 'Prison officers, professionalism and moral judgement'. In N. Blagden, B. Winder, K. Hocken, R. Lievesley, P. Banyard & H. Elliott (eds.), Sexual Crime and the Experience of Imprisonment. London: Palgrave Macmillan, p.85-108.

Jarman, B., & Lanskey, C. (2019). ‘A Poor Prospect Indeed’: The state’s disavowal of child abuse victims in youth custody, 1960–1990’. Societies, 9(2), 27. 

Jefferson, A.M., & Schmidt, B.E. (2019) ‘Concealment and revelation as bureaucratic and ethnographic practice: Lessons from Tunisian prisons’, Critique of Anthropology, 39(2), p.155-171.

Liebling, A., Laws, B., Lieber, E., Auty, K., Schmidt, B. E., Crewe, B., Gardom, J., Kant, D., & Morey, M. (2019) 'Are Hope and Possibility Achievable in Prison?' The Howard Journal of Crime and Justice, 58(1), p.104-126. 

Liebling, A., Skar, M., Lokdam, N., Muriqi, A., Haliti, D., Rushiti, F., & Modvig, J. (2019) ‘Quality of prison life, violence and mental health in Dubrava prison’. International Journal of Prisoner Health,15(3).

Schmidt, B.E. (2019) ‘La voz de los internos’ (‘The Prisoner’s Voice’). Revista de Criminología, Instituto de Criminología, Servicio Penitenciario Federal, Argentina, 5, p.105-124. 




Prisons Research at Cambridge University


The Prisons Research Centre (PRC) was founded in 2000, under the Directorship of Professor Alison Liebling. The Centre has received funding from a wide range of sources, including the Prison Service/NOMS, the Nuffield Foundation, the Leverhulme Trust, the ESRC, KPMG, the Home Office and UKDS (now Kalyx).

The Cambridge Institute of Criminology Prisons Research Centre aims to provide a stimulating research environment in which a coherent strategy of high quality research can be pursued, and integration between funded and non-funded, and applied and theoretical projects can be facilitated. We investigate how prisons operate, socially, morally and operationally, how they are experienced, and the relationship between these moral and social qualities, and their effects.

Members of the PRC team carry out, individually and collectively, methodologically rigorous and theoretically relevant field-based studies addressing problems of human and social values, punishment practices, and the organisation and effects of aspects of prison life. We strive to forge links with other prisons researchers, scholars in the broader fields of criminology and sociology, and with practitioners. Our vision is to develop a rigorous and person-centred model of social inquiry.

You can read more about the latest projects in our Annual Reports.