Oberwittler, D., & Höfer, S. (2005). Crime and Justice in Germany : an Analysis of Recent Trends and Research. European Journal of Criminology, 2(4), 465–508. doi:10.1177/1477370805056058
The article reports trends in crime and criminal justice and reviews publications in key areas of criminology in Germany. Criminal statistics show divergent trends in recent years, with rising drug and violent offences and stable or falling property offences. Statistics on sanction practices show a long-term trend towards informal and community sanctions despite some increase in prison sentences in recent years. German reunification and a subsequent increase in immigration have put some strain on the criminal justice system. On the whole, however, neither penal practice nor popular attitudes as measured by periodic surveys support the notion of a "punitive turn" in Germany. Stability and a certain inertia prevail in German crime policies. Criminology has not grown into an independent academic discipline but is an interdisciplinary research field to which law, psychology, sociology and other disciplines contribute. There is still a noticeable rift in German criminology between "mainstream" and "critical" approaches, contributing to a rather incoherent research landscape. Recent research has particularly focused on youth crime and violence, especially xenophobic violence, on ethnic minorities, and on organized crime. The review concludes with proposals for strengthening criminological research in Germany.