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Professor in Criminal Justice and Faculty Director of Public Engagement, University of Kent

I am Professor in Criminal Justice in the University of Kent’s School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research, and also Director of Public Engagement for the Faculty of Social Sciences. I am a member of the UK Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (the independent body which advises ministers on the classification of illicit drugs). I am also President of the International Society of the Study of Drug Policy. Views expressed here do not represent those of these organisations. On Twitter @AlexStevensKent

I have worked on issues of drugs, crime and health in the voluntary sector, as an academic researcher and as an adviser to the UK government.

I have published extensively on these issues, with a focus on the sociology of drugs and crime, on risk behaviours by young people, on the use of evidence in policy and on quasi-compulsory drug treatment. My published worked includes a book on Drugs, Crime and Public Health, studies of decriminalisation of drugs in Portugal, of the right to use drugs, on gangs and on the ethnography of policy making.

My interest in drugs and crime dates back to my time working with UK charity Prisoners Abroad, which provides advice and information to British prisoners held in foreign prisons, and as European project manager and coordinator of the European Network of Drug and HIV/AIDS Services in Prison for Cranstoun Drugs Services.

I also led QCT Europe, a European-funded, six-country research project on treatment for drug dependent offenders, and a project called “Early Exit” on early retention in drug treatment for the Department for Health.

I have a PhD in Social Policy from the University of Kent, an MA in Socio-Legal Studies from the University of Sheffield and a BA in French (in the School of European Studies) from the University of Sussex.


  • 2010–present
    Professor in Criminal Justice, University of Kent