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Prisons Research Centre




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


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. and 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. and Liebling, A. (2020) 'Exploring the Relationship between Prison Social Climate and Reoffending', Justice Quarterly 37(2): 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. and Ievins, A. (2020) 'Tightness, recognition and penal power', Punishment & Society.

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

Henriksen, A.K. and 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. and Laws, B. (in press). 'Liminality revisited: mapping the emotional adaptations of women in carceral space', Punishment & Society

Laursen, J., Mjåland, K. and 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): 363-381.

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

Laws, B. and 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. and Vanhouche, A.S. (2020) 'Where two 'exceptional' prison cultures meet: Negotiating order in a transnational prison'. British Journal of Criminology.

Liebling, A., Williams, R. and 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): 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. and Ievins, A. (2019) The prison as a reinventive institution. Theoretical Criminology, 1-22,

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

Hulley, S., Crewe, B. and 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, pp. 85-108.

Jarman, B. and 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. and Schmidt, B.E. (2019) ‘Concealment and revelation as bureaucratic and ethnographic practice: Lessons from Tunisian prisons’, Critique of Anthropology 39(2): 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), 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: 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.