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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

Real-life observations of social distance in public: do people actually do it?

Rosenkrantz Lindegaard and Snoek draw on full time recordings of 55 surveillance cameras in Amsterdam to identify hotspots for rule-breaking of the social distancing measures. For their analysis, they apply video artificial intelligence and systematic behavioral coding, in order to establish where in the city people tend to break the rules, e.g. gather in groups […]

Young people use alcohol and drugs while hanging out with peers

Most prior studies on adolescent substance focus on the individual but not on the setting. For example, adolescents who spend more time with peers are known to be more likely to use alcohol and drugs. It is typically assumed but not verified that alcohol and drugs use actually takes place during the time spent with […]

The Human Factor of Cybercrime

As a result, human decision-making plays a substantial role in the course of an offence, the justice response, and policymakers’ attempts to legislate against these crimes. This book focuses on the human factor in cybercrime: its offenders, victims, and parties involved in tackling cybercrime. Traditional criminal or new offender types? The distinct nature of cybercrime […]

Peter van der Laan appointed as interim director NSCR

Peter van der Laan studied special education at Leiden University. In 1991, he gained his doctorate for a thesis entitled Experimenteren met alternatieve sancties voor jeugdigen (Experimenting with alternative sanctions for juveniles). For many years, he has carried out research in the area of child protection, juvenile deliquency and (youth) criminal law. From 1981 to […]

Bystander effect in street disputes disquestioned

For fifty years, psychologists have assumed a bystander effect: in an emergency situation the crowd looks, but nobody intervenes. The higher the number of bystanders, the more anonymous we feel and the smaller the chance that somebody intervenes. ‘But that is not at all what we found’, says cultural anthropologist Marie Rosenkrantz Lindegaard, who led […]

Reputation influences collaboration within cryptomarket for drugs

Cryptomarkets are online “marketplaces” that are only accessible using encryption software, which hides the identity and location of users. This coding technology makes it difficult for law enforcers to tackle these marketplaces. The markets can be found in the Dark Web, the part of the Internet not indexed by search engines. Trust problem due to […]

Cybercrime has serious consequences for its victims

Online crimes include offences such as hacking into a database containing personal details or using a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack to paralyse a bank’s website. ‘Conventional’ offences can also be committed online, however. Examples of this would be online fraud, stalking, making threats, and distributing images of child sexual abuse. Online offences differ […]

Adolescent offenders’ current whereabouts predict locations of their future crimes

Recent advances in the analysis of human mobility have confirmed that human spatial behavior follows remarkably regular and predictable daily and weekly cycles, that can be explained by two simple mechanisms. The first mechanism is preferential return, the propensity to return to locations frequently visited before. The second mechanism is spatial exploration, the tendency to […]

The Oxford Handbook of Environmental Criminology

In crime it is not only important who violates the law and why, but also where and when. In which cities, neighborhoods and streets do we find the most victims? And in what season and at what time of the day do most of the offenses take place? Ever since the emergence of criminological science, […]