New criminology team at The University of Nottingham

11 Sep 2014 14:53:14.897
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A professor and assistant professor of criminology join the ranks of newcomers to The University of Nottingham this autumn. 

Professor Bill Dixon has expertise in policing, racially motivated offenders and crime, crime control and criminal justice in post-apartheid South Africa. Together with Dr Melanie Jordan, who has a PhD in Prison Mental Health, they will lead the University’s new Criminology and Social Policy and Criminology and Sociology BA degree courses and the Criminology MA.

The new joint honours degrees offered by the School of Sociology and Social Policy have already proved popular with over 273 applications for 40 places. The courses will focus on the study of crime, its definitions, causes and consequences.
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Professor Dixon said: “Criminology adds another dimension to the School’s existing programmes in Sociology and Social Policy and these new courses offer students a fantastic opportunity to study crime, and how we can respond to it, in its social context.”

Professor Dixon’s most recent work has been on the background to the shooting of 34 striking miners at Marikana in South Africa’s North West Province on August 16 2012. His previous research has looked at racially motivated offenders in North Staffordshire, the governance and accountability of London’s Metropolitan Police, innovations in policing and problem-solving policing at ‘hotspot’ locations. Professor Dixon has hands-on experience of working on community safety and policing in the voluntary sector and local government.

His work is now focussed on the evidence currently being presented to the Marikana Commission of Inquiry into the shooting at the Lonmin-owned mine which led to the deaths of 44 people between 11 and 16 August 2012. More than 70 others were injured and hundreds of arrests made. Professor Dixon will look at what the inquiry reveals about the governance and accountability of the police in contemporary South Africa.

Dr Jordan’s expertise lies in offender health, prison mental healthcare, victimology, institutions’ structural and cultural contexts, plus theoretical criminology and penology. She has taken up her new post after several years working as a postdoc in the Institute of Mental Health on Jubilee Campus. 

Dr Jordan said: “The study of criminology is an exceedingly exciting field of academia. It is inherently an interdisciplinary endeavour, due to its focus on social problems and welfare (social policy), social relations and institutions (sociology), and social deviance and behaviours (criminology).

Head of School, Professor Bruce Stafford, said: “We are absolutely delighted that Bill and Mel have joined the School. The new criminology degrees are an exciting development that builds upon a wide range of existing crime-related research and teaching conducted at Nottingham. Graduates will be able to pursue careers in the police, probation service, local/national government and voluntary associations working on crime-related issues and private companies with interests in security. Bill’s research has strong links with work done in a wide range of schools at Nottingham, including law, psychology and medicine.”

High res images of Professor Dixon and Dr Jordan are available on request.

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Notes to editors: The University of Nottingham has 43,000 students and is ‘the nearest Britain has to a truly global university, with campuses in China and Malaysia modelled on a headquarters that is among the most attractive in Britain’ (Times Good University Guide 2014). It is also the most popular university in the UK among graduate employers, in the top 10 for student experience according to the Times Higher Education and one of the world’s greenest universities

Impact: The Nottingham Campaign, its biggest-ever fundraising campaign, is delivering the University’s vision to change lives, tackle global issues and shape the future. More news…

Story credits

More information is available from Professor Bill Dixon on +44 (0)115 951 5403,
Lindsay Brooke

Lindsay Brooke - Media Relations Manager

Email: Phone: +44 (0)115 951 5751 Location: University Park

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