We are happy to announce this year's DEC and AEC awards!

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Professor Brandon Welsh is the recipient of the 2021 Joan McCord Award!

The Joan McCord Award recognizes distinguished experimental contributions to criminology and criminal justice. Award recipients must have conducted significant experimental research that is in the tradition of Joan McCord and has important implications for policy and practice.  The award can be given to a specific randomized controlled trial or a group of experiments leading to significant policy outcomes.

This year’s Joan McCord Award is given to Brandon C. Welsh, Professor of Criminology at Northeastern University and Director of the Cambridge-Somerville Youth Study. Professor Welsh is a leading figure in experimental criminology. Brandon’s research focuses on the prevention of delinquency and crime, with an emphasis on developmental, community, and situational approaches. He is well known for his attention to evidence-based social policy, with an impressive and long-lasting career on causal research. He is an author or editor of 11 books, including Experimental Criminology: Prospects for Advancing Science and Public Policy (Cambridge University Press) and, most recently with Eric Piza, The Globalization of Evidence-Based Policing: Innovations in Bridging the Research-Practice Divide (Routledge). We are proud to recognise Brandon Welsh’s contributions by giving him the 2021 Joan McCord Award!



Justin Nix is a rising star in criminology and experimental criminology in particular. He is a distinguished associate professor at the University of Nebraska, Omaha, and his research on procedural justice, legitimacy, and officer-involved shootings has received a great deal of attention. Justin publishes widely in leading journals, including Justice Quarterly, Criminology & Public Policy, and Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency. One outstanding publication in the Journal of Experimental Criminology on causal effects of civilian demeanour on police officers’ cognitions and emotions is especially noteworthy. For his work he received multiple awards, including this year’s Outstanding Young Experimental Criminologist (2021). Well done, Justin!



This award recognizes lifetime achievement in the field of experimental criminology. Professor Manuel Eisner certainly deserves this year’s Jerry Lee Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding and impressive contribution to experimental criminology. Albeit an historian in training, Manuel publishes extensively on causal matters, as well as the consequences of interpersonal violence in different contexts. Professor Eisner has conducted multiple experiments, including testing the effectiveness of interventions to reduce children's externalizing behavior, interventions to minimize school exclusions, and increasing engagement in parenting programs, amongst a long list of trials around the globe. As the director of the Violence Research Centre at the University of Cambridge, Manuel writes extensively on a wide range of issues, with a focus on psychological and social mechanisms for change and stability of violent behaviour over the life course. For these and other research projects, we are particularly honoured to recognise Professor Eisner’s work and look forward to many more years of interesting and ground-breaking contributions to our field. 



This award recognizes a single research project that contributes significantly to criminological research and experimental science.

This year our Awards Committee chose a recent article published in the journal of experimental criminology as an outstanding study: the results of a randomized controlled trial of police body-worn video in Australia. Joseph Clare, Darren Henstock, Christine McComb, Roy Newland and Geoffrey C. Barnes have tested the effect of equipping police officers with body worn cameras, and found mixed results, which mirror the overall findings in the literature on body worn cameras. This time, however, the scholars pushed the boundaries by showing evidence-gathering benefits of body worn cameras:  producing cost/time efficiencies when taking field interviews. They have also shown that body worn camera footage may result in earlier guilty pleas, but also result in citizens’ complaints increasing on days when officers wore body worn cameras compared to control conditions. For these series of findings, we celebrate this important publication, and anticipate more experiments from our colleagues in Australia!



Kristina Block is a PhD student at Sam Houston State University and a recent MS graduate in Criminology at the University of Pennsylvania. Kristina recently published a paper in Criminology & Delinquency on crime levels following professional hockey games. Using interesting and advanced statistical techniques, Kristina shows that, surprisingly, NHL games lead to small but significant increases in property crimes and assaults, but with no significant effect for alcohol-related crimes. These results have wide-reaching consequences, and we are thrilled to celebrate Kristina’s publication.