I have spent much of my career working as an applied researcher in the criminal justice system. Initially working as a researcher in number of prisons across the female and male estates, and in probation.I then joined the (then local) Greater Manchester Probation Service as a research assistant in 2001, becoming ‘Head of Research and Policy’ in 2010. Over this time, I was part of building a team of research, information and practice staff who delivered a range of research and practice support functions for the service. The unit also delivered commissioned research to other organisations. Our research commissioners included a range of voluntary sector organisations working with women in the criminal justice system, such as Clean Break and Women in Prison, as well as the Ministry of Justice, Greater Manchester Police, the NHS England and Manchester City Council. During this time, I also took up part-time academic research fellowships - at University of Manchester and London School of Economics.
In January 2014 I joined MMU as a Senior Lecturer. Within MMU I am also able to maintain my commitment to challenging the position of women and other marginalized groups in the CJS. The transition into academia has enabled me to take a more reflective turn in my work, in particular examining: processes of ‘othering’ and criminalisation; the merging of penal and welfare policies, and the characteristics of contemporary policies including what counts as success; and how knowledge, and ignorance, is constructed, and the relationship between knowledge, politics and policy.
I teach on a number of undergraduate and postgraduate units concerning: philosophies of punishment; processes of crminalisation; crime, deviance and control; deconstructing gender; and future visions of criminal justice policy.