The British Society of Criminology Conference is an annual event that is the cornerstone of criminology’s professional development, vitally important to the British Society of Criminology and its members. This was the first year the Conference has been hosted in the North East of England.
Northumbria University’s School of Arts and Social Sciences were fully supported by NewcastleGateshead Convention Bureau from the outset in their bid to host this prestigious international event in 2011, the successful bid saw the event take at Northumbria University’s award-winning City Campus East (CCE).
The event attracted 400 delegates to Northumbria University – including practitioners, policy-makers and academics – representing a diverse range of delegates from the criminological community including those from North America, continental Europe, Asia and Australasia.
At Northumbria University the annual meeting of the British Society of Criminology enhanced its reputation for its warm, inclusive and friendly reputation due in no small part to administrative and academic colleagues from the Department of Social Sciences at Northumbria University. This Department is a national and internationally recognized centre of excellence in research, teaching and professional development in Criminology, Sociology and Political Science. With almost 50 academic staff, a large PGR community, and extensive links with practitioner communities, the Department was able to provide the critical mass of expertise and access to regional and local networks needed to host the 2011 Conference.
According to feedback from delegates across the globe as well as the exhibitors, sponsors, organisers and the British Society of Criminology Society itself, the event was a resounding success – academically and organisationally.
The theme for the 2011 conference was ‘Economies and Insecurities of Crime and Justice’. This encompassed the applied and theoretical nature of contemporary criminologies. The overarching aim was to explore the criminal justice sector and crime patterns through the lens of contemporary political and economic climates. A range of key debates and controversies connected to this main theme:
Economic crisis, public spending and the criminal justice sector
Recessional climates and the landscapes of criminal enterprise
The political economies of crime, crime control and criminal justice
Social exclusion, consumer culture and criminal enterprise
The academic and practitioner interface – global to local
Fear, insecurity and victimisation
Global economies and local insecurities
Throughout the conference a number of exciting exhibitions were showcased in the CCE as well as in Gallery North, Northumbria University’s own contemporary exhibition space. These included the GAP Project Exhibition – the photographic exhibition – I see, You Don’t See – from Newcastle’s GAP (Girls Are Proud) Project. GAP is a peer-led support project run by the homeless charity, Tyneside Cyrenians.
Insider Art Exhibition – An exhibition of prisoners’ art work was displayed in Northumbria University’s Gallery North situated in the School of Arts and Social Sciences. Prisons from around the region, including HMP Frankland and HMP Durham, and HMP Grendon from the south of England, took part in the exhibition and sent art work to be displayed. All art work, including watercolours, textile art, sculpture and creative writing, was produced by prisoners currently serving sentences.