Criminology and criminal justice, have, until recently primarily been conceived of as local, or at least national institutions. There is a reason for this geographical focus; criminal law, for the most part, is bounded by national territory. Yet, as all parts of our lives are increasingly shaped by mass migration and globalisation, from the food we eat, to the people who live on our street, our finances, our friends, what we read, where we travel, there is no reason to imagine that criminal justice would be unaffected. Not only are some crimes, like terrorism, cybercrime, trafficking, or drug offences global, but criminal justice agents and institutions increasingly operate across borders or have an impact far away. Criminal justice, under these circumstances, has not only expanded but changed its effect and, at least in part, its justification.
Indeed, although some aspects and impacts of globalisation are new, the Centre for Criminology has a long tradition of examining global criminal justice. Known for our pioneering work on punishment, victims, policing, the death penalty, security, and border control, we have rarely been limited to one jurisdiction. Roger Hood, whose distinguished career and contribution to international criminology, set many of the foundations of our focus on global matters in his work on the death penalty. That research which continues with Carolyn Hoyle, is complemented by a variety of other scholarship and research. From global policing, to sex trafficking, transitional justice, security and terrorism to border control, Oxford faculty have published widely on global criminal criminal justice.
It is not just the faculty members who have global interests. We are fortunate in Oxford to attract some of the best students from around the world. They arrive with expertise in their own countries, often using their time here to develop research about where they came from. Sometimes they deliberately concentrate on local, British practices, to take home new ideas.
In recognition of these traditions and in response to the growing challenges posed by globalisation, in June 2016, as part of our 50th anniversary celebrations, the Centre launched a new Global Criminal Justice Hub to promote understanding of, and dialogue about, criminal justice responses to crimes around the world, including cybercrime; trafficking in persons; justice responses to migrants and asylum seekers; conflicts, aggression, and war crimes; law enforcement in developing democracies; and the use of judicial and non-judicial executions around the world. Faculty and students in the Hub will be encouraged to work alongside or in close relationship with international experts from the academy, NGOs, policy-making institutions, and civil society organisations, in research projects, knowledge-exchange, and dissemination.
As the first step towards realizing this ambitious goal we are pleased to announce a series of collaborative exchanges with universities around the world. Just as crime and justice travel, so too, do ideas and we hope to support critical intellectual exchange that can work towards imagining and implementing global justice.
Please contact Joanna Longhurst if you would like any further information.