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Translational criminology

The Neurobiology of Sexual Assault: Implications for Law Enforcement, Prosecution, and Victim Advocacy

December 2012

Dr. Campbell brings together research on the neurobiology of trauma and the criminal justice response to sexual assault. She explains the underlying neurobiology of traumatic events, its emotional and physical manifestation, and how these processes can impact the investigation and prosecution of sexual assaults. Real-world, practical implications are examined for first responders, such as law enforcement, nurses, prosecutors, and advocates.

Violent Repeat Victimization: Prospects and Challenges for Research and Practice

April 2012

Research tells us that a relatively small fraction of individuals experience a large proportion of violent victimizations. Thus, focusing on reducing repeat victimization might have a large impact on total rates of violence. However, research also tells us that most violent crime victims do not experience more than one incident during a six-month or one-year time period. As a result, special policies to prevent repeat violence may not be cost-effective for most victims.

Changing the Behavior of Drug-Involved Offenders: Supervision That Works

December 2012

A small number of offenders who are heavily involved in drugs commit a large portion of the crime in this country. An evaluation of a "smart supervision" effort in Hawaii that uses swift and certain sanctioning showed that heavily involved drug offenders can indeed change their behavior when the supervision is properly implemented.

Reforming New Orleans' Criminal Justice System: The Role of Data and Research

September 2012

With its criminal justice system in disarray following Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans invited the Vera Institute of Justice to examine the city's court and jail operations. For five years, Vera has been tracking arrest-to-first-appearance time, custodial arrests versus summonses, the granting of pretrial release, and many other decision-making points. Based on analysis of these data, Vera is making policy recommendations to assist with the implementation of new procedures and to ensure performance monitoring.

The Evaluation of NIJ by the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences: NIJ's Response

June 2011

The National Academies conducted a comprehensive evaluation of the National Institute of Justice. This panel provides an overview of the evaluation and NIJ's response to it. NIJ has accepted many of the recommendations in the NRC report, and you will learn what the agency is doing to implement them. A few of the recommendations were challenging and created considerable debate within NIJ. Plans to address these thorny issues also are discussed.

Translational Criminology

One of the ideas that I am emphasizing at NIJ as we move forward is "Translational Criminology." I first learned about the idea of translational research in the field of medicine from my daughter who is a pediatrician. The idea of translational criminology is simple yet powerful. If we want to prevent, reduce and manage crime, scientific discoveries must be translated into policy and practice.

Addiction, the Brain, and Evidence-Based Treatment

March 2012

The criminal justice system encounters and supervises a large number of drug abusing persons. Punishment alone is a futile and ineffective response to the problem of drug abuse. Addiction is a chronic brain disease with a strong genetic component that in most instances requires treatment. Involvement in the criminal justice system provides a unique opportunity to treat drug abuse disorders and related health conditions, thereby improving public health and safety.

Discussing the Future of Justice-Involved Young Adults

September 2015

New science in brain development is transforming young adult involvement with the justice system. On Tuesday, September 8, Attorney General Loretta Lynch, Assistant Attorney General Karol Mason, and experts from NIJ and the Harvard Kennedy School Program in Criminal Justice who serve on the Executive Session on Community Corrections discussed the future of justice-involved young adults.

NIJ's 50th Anniversary - Looking Back, Looking Forward

August 2018
NIJ’s 50th anniversary is an opportunity to reflect on how far the Institute has come, as well as its direction and priorities moving forward. In this Research for the Real World event, panelists will speak to the history and future of the Institute, drawing from decades of experience working for and closely with NIJ. Two Former NIJ Directors will reflect on their days heading the agency and their observations on how the agency has changed over time.

Understanding the Science-Practice Gap

December 2016
In this video Jessica Shaw, Ph.D., describes what she learned about the science-practice gap while working as a translational criminology fellow at NIJ. She discusses what the science-practice gap is, how research intermediaries work to bridge that gap, how organizations and individuals can have gaps, and the importance of interdisciplinarity.