Zarek is a part-time DPhil candidate at the Centre for Criminology, University of Oxford. He is conducting an English longitudinal study exploring men's and women's experiences of imprisonment and their resettlement into society. This project is supervised by Professor Mary Bosworth.
He currently works at HMRC as Head of Programme Delivery, following his Senior Policy Advisor position at the Cabinet Office. He was highly commended for the 2017 John Sunley Prize. In 2015, he was one of few selected to participate in the Cambridge 'Learning Together' educational initiative at HMP Grendon - an environment bringing people in criminal justice and higher education to study together in transformative learning communities.
Prior to doctoral study, Zarek completed the MPhil Criminological Research programme at the Institute of Criminology, University of Cambridge, and read BSc Criminology and Sociology at Royal Holloway, University of London, where he graduated with a first class degree. His research interests include prison sociology, punishment and society and desistance.