Faculty Research Projects
Faculty and students are actively engaged in research on a wide variety of issues pertaining to the causes of crime and the criminal justice response to crime. Faculty within the school are highly successful in securing external funding to support their research, developing research collaborations within the University of Nebraska system, and partnering with community stakeholders to address specific research priorities. Federal agencies that have provided funding for research projects include the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Office on Violence Against Women, National Institute of Justice, Department of Homeland Security and many local and regional agencies.
Faculty and students frequently publish research findings in academic journals, present findings at national and regional conferences, and provide study results to community stakeholders to inform best practices and evidence-based policies.
SCCJ Research Labs and Ongoing Projects
Funded Graduate Research Assistantship opportunities may be available to incoming UNO SCCJ graduate students. Please direct inquiries to project leads.
The Nebraska Collaborative for Violence Intervention and Prevention (NeCVIP) is a collaboration between the UNO SCCJ and UNMC College of Medicine, Department of Surgery focused on reducing gun violence, strengthening community assets and culture, and systematically applying data and science to ensure effective outcomes. The Collaborative augments the criminal justice system’s efforts to reduce violence through enforcement, while building and evaluating additional solutions of prevention, intervention, and enforcement, and reentry strategies for juvenile and adult justice including ENCOMPASS, a hospital based violence intervention program. The Collaborative is co-directed by Dr. Gaylene Armstrong, UNO SCCJ, and trauma surgeon Dr. Charity Evans, UNMC and a team of medical, research and criminal justice professionals such as Dr. Mark Foxall. Prospective graduate students interested in a graduate research assistantship in the NeCVIP may direct their inquiries to Dr. Armstrong.
The Victimology and Victim Studies Research Lab conducts high quality research related to crime victims and crime victimization, inform policy and practice, and help shape prevention and intervention efforts. The VVSRL draws from undergraduate students engaged in UNO’s School of Criminology and Criminal Justice’s (SCCJ) victim studies concentration/minor and SCCJ’s masters and doctoral students and utilizes a structured mentoring model to develop future generations of victimology scholars. Several ongoing projects are led by UNO SCCJ faculty including Leah Butler, Ph.D., Teresa Kulig, Ph.D., Tara Richards, Ph.D., and Emily Wright, Ph.D.
Promoting Racial Equity Through Transformative Public Housing -- This project examines the scope and patterns of eviction among transition-aged youth in Nebraska through the development of unique data including information on eviction, criminal justice system involvement, and experiences with child welfare. We bring together partners from across governmental agencies, community-based non-profits, and mental health clinics to work holistically toward a data-driven, trauma-informed, restorative-justice approach to housing policies. Investigators include UNO SCCJ’s Juvenile Justice Institute: Anne Hobbs, J.D., Ph.D., Tara Richards, Ph.D. (UNO SCCJ), psychiatry: Michelle Roley-Roberts, Ph.D. (Creighton), Pierce Greenberg, Ph.D. (Creighton) with collaboration from the Nebraska Children and Families Foundation.
The Crime and Justice Public Opinion Lab (CJPOL)
This SCCJ lab tracks public beliefs, attitudes, and opinions on a broad range of crime, law, and justice related issues. These include beliefs about the nature of crime and victimization, attitudes toward people who commit crime, attitudes about victims of crime, and opinions on laws, policies, and practices across the criminal legal system. The CJPOL draws from undergraduate, masters, and doctoral students who are interested in learning more about public opinion, the factors that influence public opinion, and the methodologies used in public opinion research. Several UNO SCCJ faculty will be involved in developing and leading ongoing projects in the lab, including Leah Butler, Ph.D., Teresa Kulig, Ph.D., Erin Kearns, Ph.D., and Amy Anderson, Ph.D.
National Counterterrorism Innovation, Technology and Education Center (NCITE) UNO SCCJ is a partner in the university-wide initiative led by Dr. Gina Ligon including more than 50 researchers from 18 academic institutions working on 10 focused projects. Dr. Gaylene Armstrong is Theme Lead for Terrorism and Targeted Violence Projects. SCCJ faculty member Dr. Erin Kearns focuses her extensive research in this area. Prospective criminal justice graduate students with an interest in this area should contact Dr. Kearns regarding funded opportunities to study with NCITE. Learn more about ongoing projects.