• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

Good research starts with careful planning and a thorough understanding of the research process. The abilities to design a research study and to evaluate those conducted by others are core skills every student of criminology must learn. With guidance from theoretical considerations through the steps of the research process, this book equips you with the necessary tools to carry out a successful, ethical study. This is a completely updated new edition, and it features • A new skills-focused chapter on how to evaluate existing qualitative studies and design new ones • Rich examples from real research making the ideas and concepts concrete • New in-depth case studies on fashion counterfeiting, electronic monitoring and youth justice to illustrate the realities of conducting qualitative research • A full discussion of the politics of research, issues of access, ethics and managing risk in the field • Thought-provoking exercises reinforce practical research skills This book is the perfect guide to theory and practice for any student undertaking qualitative research on crime or criminal justice.


Within criminology the ethnographic tradition is long established. Indeed, some researchers have gone so far as to suggest that ethnography has been especially reliant on studies of deviance (Adler and Adler, 1995; Lofland, 1987; Manning, 1987), leading to studies of youth subcultures, gangs, prostitution, professional and organised crime and illicit drug use (see Hobbs, 2007 for an overview). This is a contentious view but it can be argued that some of the most important contributions to the sociology of crime and deviance have developed out of ethnographic work. Coupled with the use of ethnographic approaches to explore the workings of the criminal justice system, ethnography has proved its value as a way of conducting criminological research. As we shall explore in this chapter, ...

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