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  1. Amsterdam Research Seminar: An intergenerational perspective on criminal behaviour | 17 June

Amsterdam Research Seminar: An intergenerational perspective on criminal behaviour | 17 June

Netherlands Institute for the Study of Crime and Law Enforcement

In this Research Seminar organized by the (NSCR), we proudly present several important international experts in the field of intergenerational transmission of criminal behaviour. They will reflect upon the most important findings from their ongoing intergenerational research. Afterwards, the discussion will be led by prof. dr. H. Elffers (NSCR).
Why is it so important to study (criminal) behavior in an intergenerational perspective?
One of the most influential and intimate relationships within the life-course of an individual is the relationship between parent and child. Children often resemble their parents in socioeconomic status, family formation, or political attitudes. We also know that there are families who are stuck in a negative cycle of criminal behaviour, poverty, substance abuse, teenage pregnancies, poor parenting and other adverse life circumstances. This can be considered a substantive societal problem, for which solutions are not yet evident. Breaking these intergenerational chains is possible and it is therefore extremely important to study problematic and criminal behaviour – as well as related problems and life events – from an intergenerational perspective.


Dr. K.G. Hill – University of Washington, USA

Hill has been working on the Seattle Social Development Project (SSDP) during the last seventeen years, and since ten years he is also involved in the SSDP Intergenerational Project (NIDA, Linking Parent Drug Use and Child Development Across Three Generations). His work has focused on understanding development and consequences of antisocial behaviours such as crime, gang membership, drug use and dependence, and on the mechanisms of continuity and discontinuity in these behaviours across generations.

Prof. dr. T. Thornberry – University of Maryland, USA

Professor Thornberry's research interests focus on understanding the development of delinquency and crime over the life course, the consequences of maltreatment, and intergenerational continuity in antisocial behaviour. He is the Principal Investigator of the Rochester Youth Development Study, a three-generation panel study begun in 1986 to examine the causes and consequences of delinquency and other forms of antisocial behaviours. He has developed an interactional theory to explain these behaviours and has used data from the study to empirically test his theory.

Prof. dr. D.P. Farrington – Cambridge University, UK

Professor David P. Farrington, is a chartered forensic psychologist whose interests focus particularly upon developmental and life-course criminology, longitudinal studies of criminal careers, riskfocused prevention and evaluating the effectiveness of interventions. He is the director of the Cambridge Study in Delinquent Development, which is a 40-year follow-up of 400 London males. Their adult children have recently been interviewed to make this a three-generation study. In addition to many research papers on risk factors and the development of offending, Professor Farrington has published widely on other topics as well.

Prof. dr. D. Boomsma – Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Professor Dorret Boomsma established the Netherlands Twin Register (NTR), which over the past 25 years has attracted over 75,000 twins and over 100,000 of their family members in the Netherlands (Netherlands Twin Register) and even abroad. Data collected in NTR projects form the basis for genetic studies of complex traits. The twins and their families have completed surveys, undergone periodic testing, and participated in large biobank projects, providing a wealth of longitudinal data for research into health and disease. A large number of participants have also provided DNA, blood and urine samples for testing. Boomsma’s research has primarily focused on a better understanding of the influence of the genome on physical and mental traits, including cognition and brain development, the development of behavioural and emotional problems in children, personality, psychiatric disorders in adults, migraine, cardiovascular diseases and metabolic syndrome.

Prof. dr. P. Giordano – Bowling Green State University, USA

Professor Peggy C. Giordano received her PhD in sociology from the University of Minnesota in 1974 and joined the faculty of Bowling Green State University the same year. Her monograph on the experiences of a sample of highly delinquent youth focuses on the intergenerational transmission of crime and other negative developmental outcomes. She is currently conducting a longitudinal study (The Toledo Adolescent Relationships study) of the relationship experiences of a large, diverse sample of respondents interviewed first as adolescence, and subsequently as they have navigated the transition to adulthood.

Practical Information:


June 17th 2016 14.30-17.30 (Drinks afterwards!)


Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam – Atrium room, which is located on the first floor of the Medical Faculty Vrije Universiteit, Van der Boechorststraat 7, Amsterdam. See here for a detailed route to the VU campus, and here for directions to the Medical Faculty.

How to register

The seminar is free of charge, however, due to a limited number of visitors prior registration is required. E-mail us to register: secretariaat@nscr.nl

Further inquiries about the programme

Do not hesitate to contact the organizing committee: Steve van de Weijer (svandeweijer@nscr.nl) or Veroni Eichelsheim (veichelsheim@nscr.nl).

prof. dr. Veroni Eichelsheim

Senior Onderzoeker

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