Criminal Justice Policy Research Institute
Brian Renauer, Director
Ph.D. SUNY Albany (Criminal Justice)
Areas of Expertise: The intersection between criminal justice and community covering a variety of topics. These topics include public trust in criminal justice, fear of crime, community policing, and racial/ethnic disparities. Specific research includes examining racial disparities in traffic stops and searches across a number of Oregon cities and understanding how experiences with criminal justice agencies impact perceptions of trust and procedural justice.
Research Skills: Survey research, community/neighborhood-level studies, research design and implementation.
Ph.D. Washington State University (Criminal Justice and Criminology)
Areas of Expertise: Evaluation of correctional strategies within adult and juvenile and community and institutional corrections settings. Specific research includes evaluating the use of “swift and certain sanctions” on recidivism in probation/parole cases, and study of the connection between institutional treatment programing and prison violence. Current projects are exploring “holistic defense” strategies by public defenders that can address criminogenic needs of defendants and their perceptions of procedural justice.
Research Skills: Use of mixed methods approach to research questions. Examples include quantitative data analysis with administrative/agency data, quasiexperimental designs using propensity score matching, interviews, focus groups, and survey research.
Ph.D. Arizona State University (Communication)
J.D. Southern Illinois University (Law)
Areas of Expertise: Expertise in law with an emphasis on human rights, environmental advocacy, human trafficking, and community engagement in local governance. Specific projects have explored the social impacts on vulnerable groups and indigenous peoples involving issues of migration, human trafficking, and environmental sustainability, with a focus on community engagement in these processes. Recent research has examined the commercial sexual exploitation of children in Portland in partnership with the U.S. Attorney’s office.
Research Skills: Mixed methods and interdisciplinary research with a focus on action-based research to assist partners in the development of policies and programs.
Ph.D. University of Florida (Criminology, Law and Society)
Areas of Expertise: Courtroom policy, processes, and decision-making. Specific research includes examining how courtroom processes (e.g. expert testimony, cross examination, role of attorney) may influence juror decisions (e.g. evaluation of evidence strength) and plea decisions (acceptance of a plea bargain vs. going to trial). Additional research interests include best practices in the interrogation room and subsequent evaluation of confession evidence, sentencing and diversion, and investigation of processes/policies related to wrongful conviction.
Research Skills: Use of experimental and quasi-experimental research designs to collect survey data for testing policy questions.
Ph.D. University of Vermont (Clinical Psychology)
Areas of Expertise: A focus on helping criminal justice agencies improve decision-making through evidence-based practices and database development to better track cases. Specific research projects have included testing the impact of focused community engagement patrols on crime and community trust using an experimental design in Portland, validation of risk assessment tools, implementing interactive crime analysis tools for the web, and community surveys.
Research Skills: Quantitative evaluation of new programs, community surveys, data analysis, database design, and data management.
To access selected work of Dr. Henning, visit PDXScholar.
Ph.D. University of Maryland (Criminology & Criminal Justice)
Areas of Expertise: Evaluating and improving criminal justice policy and practice as well as the impacts of violence and victimization. Interested in a range of program and policy evaluation topics. Specific research projects have entailed examining the effects of promising interventions designed to serve children who have been exposed to violence in a multi-site design and studying the interface of criminal justice processing and interior immigration law enforcement.
Research Skills: Study design and implementation, including multi-site and experimental evaluation. Helping practitioners and policy makers apply empirical knowledge to policy questions and effectively communicate.
To access selected work of Dr. Hickman, visit PDXScholar.
Ph.D. University of Oregon (Sociology)
Areas of Expertise: Quantitative research (methodology and statistics) and policy evaluation with a social justice lens. Specific research has explored the drivers (e.g. arrest rates, crime seriousness, sentencing policy, socioeconomic factors) of disparities in prison admissions and sentence length for women of color. Examination of the impact of “justice reinvestment” approaches on crime in California.
Research Skills: Statistical analysis and modeling, working with clients to identify the most appropriate methods (i.e. quantitative, qualitative, or both) to answer research questions, statistical analysis using large databases and panel designs.
To access selected work of Dr. Leymon, visit PDXScholar.
Ph.D. University of Maryland, College Park (Criminology and Criminal Justice)
Areas of Expertise: Research centering on children, youth, and families including juvenile justice and delinquency prevention. Specific research includes adolescent predictors of maltreatment of children when adults, impacts of parental incarceration on childhood delinquency, and neighborhood factors related to youth involvement in the justice system and minority overrepresentation.
Research Skills: Longitudinal data analysis, focus group and survey research methodologies.
Ph.D. University of South Florida (Criminology)
Areas of Expertise: White collar crime with an emphasis on the intersections of corporate and governmental law-violating behavior. Broad focus comprises the manner in which U.S. regulatory agencies monitor and enforce laws and regulations against corporate mal-/mis-/nonfeasance. Specific research has included an examination of U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s enforcement strategies and penalty assessments in the apparel industry.
Research Skills: Content analyses, case studies, secondary data and event history analyses, white-collar
Ph.D. Simon Fraser University (Criminology)
Areas of Expertise: Specializing in Geographic Information Systems and spatial patterns of crime, with a focus on crime analysis and mapping. Specific research includes examining how crime concentrations change over time as urban areas develop. Particular emphasis is placed on land use planning, like the location of new shopping malls, parks, or highway arterials/connectors, and its potential impact on crime hot spots.
Research Skills: Using geographic information systems for spatial and descriptive crime analysis, crime mapping, spatial statistics, spatial network/distance analysis.