Category Archives: General

Common Session in Budapest, Autumn 2012

The next Common Session will take place in Budapest, Hungary on 29-31. October 2012.


Conference theme:

Common Session on Criminal Justice and Critical Criminology – Evergreen Questions of Criminology: Get Smart and/or Get Tough?


Conference address:

ELTE University, Faculty of Law

Budapest, 1-3 Egyetem tér

Room: ’Aula Magna’ (1st floor)


Deadline for registration and abstracts:

15 October, 2012


Call for papers

The conference theme is Evergreen Questions of Criminology: Get Smart and/or Get Tough? Our goal is to seek answer to the question what should be the aim of crime control policy and criminal justice in the early 21st century. Will we go into a more punitive direction or will we adapt more and more restorative methods? Of course, presentations are not limited to this topic; every paper on the field of critical criminology is warmly welcomed.

The proposal should contain the name(s) of the presenter(s), the name of the university they are from, the title and a short abstract of the presentation.


The registration has already opened!


Please keep in mind that the registration for the conference is only open for members of the member universities and invited guests. Unfortunately, registration is not possible for members of the public or non-affiliated Universities. If you are not part of an affiliated University but wish to attend future conferences you may wish to consider enrolling in a related degree programme or pursuing an Erasmus or Overseas exchange programme at one of the participating Universities. Registration for students of the respective Universities is handled locally by the staff representatives, so contact your own staff for specific details and requirements in the first instance.


Please address both the submissions of papers and registrations to Lena Podoletz (


If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Klara Kerezsi ( or Lena Podoletz.


CS Porto 2012 video!

The Hamburg criminologists Georgie Pierenkemper and Rebecca Houghton took the initiative to videotape the Porto Common Session of last May, 2012. It provides a nice insight of what the Common Sessions are all about. Check it out here!

US Travel Restrictions – Visa Waiver Programme

Just a reminder for those attending the Common Session in NYC if you have not already done so previously (and do not hold a US Passport), you will need to apply for a visa waiver at least 72 hours BEFORE your flight.  The registration process takes about 10 minutes an requires a valid passport and a credit card (application fee is $14). (Thanks to Christian for highlighting this reminder)

See: for more information and the registration form

“International travelers who are seeking to travel to the United States under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) are now subject to enhanced security requirements and will be required to pay an administrative fee. All eligible travelers who wish to travel to the U.S. under the Visa Waiver Program must apply for authorization and then pay the fee using the following process”

New Documentary Films Posted

As we all return to the classrooms and lecture theatres there are a few new documentary films posted (hyperlinked) in the Videos section that are sure to be of interest.  These films produced by Vice TV capture the complexity of ‘vice’–power, hedonism, exploitation, and (il)legality.  The most recent film explores and exposes the organised sexual exploitation of children in India under the pretenses of the Devadasi religious tradition.  Earlier films explore the phenomenon of Narco-Cinema in drug-war-torn Mexico and the human and social casualties of the heroin epidemic in south Wales.   There are a number of other fascinating films on Vice TV ( that may be of interest as well.  If anyone else has seen recent films, documentary or otherwise, that are likely to be of interest and are available (legally) online please do forward the link.

Student Debate and Student Roundtable

The two debate topics/statements for the upcoming student debate in Hamburg have been posted in the discussion page here. The first question concerns social networking sites while the second question concerns dealing with surveillance.

Additionally, Susan Knickmeier has organised a student roundtable discussion, which will be separate to the student debate, on the topic of European border control and particularly the role of ‘Frontex’.  If you are interested to participate in that roundtable please contact Susan Knickmeier by 1 April with a brief abstract of your interest in the issue.  For more information please see the call for papers linked here.

Updated Information for the 25th Anniversary Common Session

Please take a moment to visit the upcoming Common Session page above.  New information has been posted.  If there is other helpful information or links please forward them to Matt or Yarin Eski at Erasmus for inclusion.  Keep an eye on this site as there will undoubtedly be more information posted later.

While preparing for the session please also consider jotting down some notes for the student meeting.  If you have any concerns, ideas, or proposals this is an ideal forum to raise them.  Change takes time but if the students are able to build a critical mass of support for particular ideas it will undoubtedly be recognized as such.  Also feel free to post on the forum page.  If you do not have the password and are a member of a participating University ask your local Staff Coordinator or post a reply where it says ‘Leave A Comment’ with an email address and I will respond.  Unless you request for it to be left active any posts with email addresses will not be made publicly accessible where spammers can find it.

Dutch criminology prize for liftetime achievement awarded posthumously to Louk Hulsman

Louk Hulsman, a founding member of the Common Study Programme, was recently posthumously awarded the Willem Adriaan Bongerprijs award for lifetime achivement by the Dutch Society for Criminology during the annual NVK congress June 19th, at the University of Leiden, Holland. The prize consists of a re-publication of a selection of his work, that will appear on the memorial of his death in January 2010.  For more information about the award or Louk’s penal abolition activism please visit his website which is regularly updated and maintained by his daughter Jehanne Hulsman

Farewell Mike Presdee


As many of you may know by now University of Kent Criminologist Mike Presdee passed away on 10 July 2009 after a long battle with cancer.  Mike was an active contributor to the growing field of cultural criminology for which his unique take on the nexus of youth culture and its criminalisation was a natural fit.  With an intensity honed as a Royal Marine and youth educator Mike’s writing was as vivid as it was penetrating.  As we remember Mike as an active contributor and advocate of critical criminology in all of its manifestations we are reminded to not only look for the subterranean forms of resistance and carnival in the environments that surround us but to actively engage with the fete of modern life for that is where this work of ours comes alive.

For those wishing to send condolences please contact us privately for a contact address.  An obituary for Mike was published in the Guardian Newspaper.  N.b. A longer obituatry will be published in the coming months in the journal Crime, Media and Culture for which Mike was an active contributor both as an author and reviewer.

Pages removed

After recieving some comments in Barcelona that the redundant list of pages along the right hand side was confusing, I have temporarily removed them.  As you will note some pages appeared to be only available along the side (i.e. videos or photographs).  They are not missing, they are hyperlinked under their respective topic.  If people would rather go back to the previous set up it can be done easily.

The Imprisonment of Rev. Louis Barrios, PhD

For those who are not already aware of the case of the ‘SOA-6’, ‘School of the Americas-6’,  Rev. Louis Barrios, PhD Chair of the John Jay Latina/o Studies Program was sentenced to two months in federal prison along with five fellow protesters for ‘trespassing on Fort Benning military base in Georgia.  A short article by his colleague, co-author and close friend David Brotherton in the Guardian today helped to raise the profile of the case.

When my colleague Luis Barrios was sent to federal prison five weeks ago, after being convicted of trespassing – a “class B” misdemeanor typically warranting a fine, community service or short-term imprisonment in a county jail – during a protest at the infamous School of the Americas, I said to him: “At least you’ll be in Manhattan, at least you’ll be near family and friends.” “Yes,” he said, “but you never know what will happen. You can go in there for a month and come out in a year.”

For more information on Rev. Dr. Barrios and his fellow protesters please see the School of the Americas Watch page dedicated to their cases.  Included in their profiles are addresses where letters can be sent for them.