Department of Criminology


Short-Term Mindsets and Crime

Head of project: Jean-Louis van Gelder
Why are some people more likely to commit crime than others? Answers to this question, which is at the heart of criminology, can be grouped into two broad views. On the one hand, dispositional perspec­tives argue that stable factors within the individual, such as lack of self-control, lie at the roots of… more

360º Virtual Scenario Method

Head of project: Jean-Louis van Gelder
The 360º Virtual Scenario Method research program aims to remedy some of the defects of the traditional written scenario (or “vignette”) method by employing immersive 360º video. This immersive method is based on the as­sump­tion that the commonly used written scenarios lack contextual detail and are unlikely… more

Virtual Burglary Project

Head of project: Jean-Louis van Gelder
The Virtual Burglary Project is a research program co-headed by Prof. Claire Nee (University of Portsmouth) and involves a collaboration with researchers from Leiden University and Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. The Virtual Burglary Project uses a VR approach to better understand the behavior of residential… more


Head of project: Jean-Louis van Gelder
FutureU is a novel and scalable behavioral intervention to increase future-orientation in offenders by connecting them to their future self. The research program, which was started with the (Dutch) Probation Service as a partner and stakeholder, is premised on the well-established notion that delinquents often… more

Criminal Sanctions and Recidivism

Heads of project: Carina Tetal, Volker Grundies
The aim of this longitudinal study is to analyze the criminal behavior of convicted individuals. Reconviction by type of offense, sanction, and socio-demographic characteristics like age and gender will be researched. The results of the first four waves of data collection are now available and cover… more

Freiburg Cohort Study

Head of project: Volker Grundies
The aim of this study is to investigate, via official data, the emergence and evolution of crime, judicial reactions towards crime, and criminal careers. The Freiburg Cohort Study is a long-term project, which, due to its specific cohort design and its extensive period of evaluation, is unique in Germany. more

 Geographical Behavior of Stranger Offenders

Head of project: Gunda Wössner
In the vast majority of sex offenses, offender and victim know each other. However, violent sexual assaults perpe­trated by strangers often incite strong feelings of fear in the community. Furthermore, rapes by strangers often pose considerable challenges and concern for law enforcement agencies. They are often faced… more

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