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The UK's premier new media criminologist - on Twitter @criminology4u, facebook and blogging on Criminology in Public and Sports Criminology.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Weather and Crime


Newburn’s Criminology is a massive and comprehensive introduction to criminology widely used by and for undergraduates.  It’s over 1,000 pages long, of which the index is nearly 20, and appears to contain no mention of weather.  I know from my wider reading of the history of criminology and of contemporary common-sense criminology that weather has been associated with crime in the past and still.

The Routledge International Handbook of Green Criminology is equally silent on weather but has much to say about climate.  Specifically these two books (Climate Change from a Criminological Perspective Edited by Rob White and Criminological and Legal Consequences of Climate Change Edited by Stephen Farrall, Tawhida Ahmed and Duncan French) take the matter further but make little mention of weather other than as evidence of climate change.

Tom Clarke, Science Editor of Channel 4 News, phoned the other day asking if I could talk about weather and crime and off the top of my head I came up with socio-cultural aspects of our adaptation to hot weather that might increase opportunities for some crimes.  And indeed PC Rain, the copper’s friend.  I was interviewed in the blazing sun outside the Cafe next to ITN’s building in Gray’s Inn Rd for about ten minutes.  What survived is in here.


Tom mentions climate change in the package.  Perhaps he means it in the common sense way of getting hotter rather than the increased instability of the weather.  This is what green criminology talks about.  Crimes caused by changing political economy responding to long term climate change not short run weather.


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