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Professor of Comparative and Developmental Criminology, University of Cambridge

I studied history at the University of Zurich and hold a PhD in sociology. I have published several authored or edited books and over 100 journal articles and book chapters in English, German, Spanish and French. My academic work revolves around the explanation of the causes, the consequences and the prevention of interpersonal violence across human societies. My research tries to contribute to the following questions: How can we describe and explain variation in levels of violence between societies and over the course of human history? What psychological and social mechanisms account for change and stability of violent behaviour over the life course? What combination of prevention, intervention and control is best suited to reduce interpersonal violence in different societies across the world? You can visit this page to find out more about my research projects.

I am a member of several editorial and advisory boards of academic journals and book series. I have also been working as an expert or co-author of reports with national governments, the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the World Bank and UNODC. I was awarded the Fellowship of the Society of Experimental Criminology and the Sellin-Glueck award by the American Society of Criminology. In 2014, I have organised, with the World Health Organization, the First Global Conference on Violence Reduction at the University of Cambridge. I was awarded the 2017 ESC European Criminology Award for my lifetime contribution to European criminology.


  • –present
    Professor of Comparative and Developmental Criminology, University of Cambridge