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Where, when and how is crime committed?

One of the key questions of NSCR research focuses on where, when and how crimes are committed. Why does crime concentrate in certain locations rather than in others? Is it because offenders happen to know these locations, as they are close to their home, job or (previous) school? Data from crime scenes and activity patterns of perpetrators and victims provide insight into the underlying choice behaviour of perpetrators.

We investigate the way in which crimes are committed and in which situational context: are bystanders and law enforcement officers present and do they have an (active) role? Carefully studying and analysing CCTV footage is a game changer for the study of crime. Researchers see real-time how situations unfold and can thus study and unravel the behaviour of perpetrators, victims and bystanders.

Program leader: Stijn Ruiter

Face-touching behaviour as a possible correlate of mask-wearing

The study Face-touching behaviour as a possible correlate of mask-wearing: A video observational study of public place incidents during the COVID-19 pandemic published in Transboundary and Emerging Diseases offers an analysis of the association between mask-wearing and face-touching in a Western European context, which was tested in two studies. Study 1: sample of both masked […]

Human behavior and the similarities with nonhuman primates

Virginia Pallante started her study in biology driven by the interest in how social cohesion is maintained in gregarious animals, trying to understand if similar strategies are shared across different species and how different societies shape the expression of such strategies. She further investigated these issues by focusing on nonhuman primates’ conflict management, a topic […]

Novel insights into offenders’ activity spaces

It is well established that offenders commit most crimes near their routine activity space: the locations where they engage in their daily activities. However, research examining the geography of offenders’ routine activity spaces has largely been limited to a few core locations such as homes, prior homes, the homes of relatives and prior offense locations. […]

Research is human work: article retraction

Research is human work and thus subject to error. The article Do offenders avoid offending near home? A systematic review of the buffer zone hypothesis, by NSCR researcher Wim Bernasco and former NSCR intern Remco van Dijke was retracted from Crime Science at the request of the authors after they had been made aware of […]

Video analysis of peer relationships: rich data, a lot of work

Video makes it possible to perform very precise conversational and behavioural analyses. As technology keeps getting better and easier to use, more and more research is done this way. The WORP meets every three months to exchange experiences. Hoeben: ‘We are a multidisciplinary working group with educationalists, psychologists, criminologists and sociologists from – currently – […]

How do people decide who to intervene towards in street conflicts?

Imagine that you are walking down a street and two individuals start to fight. Many of us want to believe that we would intervene and help in this kind of situation. But helping can be challenging – fights are often fast paced and can appear chaotic. There is oftentimes not a clear division between who […]

Curfew during lockdown: number of people on the street not much different

Also read our factsheet One Year of Social Distancing Behavior on the Streets of Amsterdam. Drawing on video footage from municipal public space cameras in Amsterdam, we investigated behavioral compliance with a curfew installed as a Covid-19 mitigating measurement in a period of lockdown. Based on the existing studies of the effect of curfews on […]

Problem-oriented policing adapted to wildlife protection

Officers for a national wildlife authority, may experience déjà vu while on the job. They arrest poacher after poacher but the poaching threat is not decreasing. They get called out to deal with crop raiding animals, but despite culling and translocation, each year there are more callouts. Probably they are not alone in thinking ‘if […]

Securing Protected Areas: The Decision-making of Poachers and Rangers

Despite considerable effort to reduce the harm, poaching continues to be a serious threat to many wildlife populations around the world. Strong and robust security of protected areas is an essential element of long term conservation success. Formal law enforcement, such as rangers patrolling a protected area, is a common security strategy used to detect […]