BSC Youth Criminology/Youth Justice Network (YC/YJN)

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Professor Barry Goldson (The University of Liverpool)  E-mail:

Steering Group
Dr Loraine Gelsthorpe (Cambridge University), Professor John Muncie (Open University), Professor Tim Newburn (London School of Economics and Political Science), Dr Jo Phoenix (Durham University).

The Youth Criminology/Youth Justice Network (YC/YJN) aims to open communication and facilitate critical reflection and exchange within and between the academic, policy and practice communities nationally and internationally. The YC/YJN derives from growing interest in the study of youth crime and justice, evidenced by an expanding body of published work in the field and the growing number of ‘youth’-centred abstracts and papers submitted to conferences/meetings in recent years. The YC/YJN was launched at the BSC conference hosted by the Mannheim Centre for Criminology at the London School of Economics in September 2007. The Network was formally ratified by the BSC Executive Committee in January 2008.

The core aims of the YC/YJN are to:

  • advance understanding of youth criminology and youth justice/juvenile justice studies;
  • provide an arena for information exchange, critical analysis and debate across the research, policy and practice communities – nationally and internationally.

To achieve these aims the YC/YJN will engage in activities that include:

  • organising and hosting conferences, seminars and symposia;
  • disseminating information through its JISCmail list and via scholarly publications;
  • responding to  policy consultations and/or requests for information.

Forthcoming Events

Future events are announced in the BSC bi-monthly bulletin.

Past Events

book coverBSC Youth Criminology/Youth Justice Network (YC/YJN)
Rethinking Comparative Youth Justice and Penality
Book Launch of ‘Youth Justice and Penality in Comparative Context’ (Routledge, 2021)
Wednesday 9 June:
6.00pm – 7:30pm Sydney, Australia
9.00am – 10:30am UK

The Australian and New Zealand Society of Criminology Children, Young People and the Criminal Justice System Thematic Group and the British Society of Criminology Youth Criminology/Youth Justice Network (YC/YJN) invite you to the launch and discussion of Youth Justice and Penality in Comparative Context (Routledge, 2021), co-authored by Professor Barry Goldson (University of Liverpool), Professor Chris Cunneen (UTS), Professor Eileen Baldry, Professor David Brown, Melanie Schwartz, Sophie Russell (UNSW) and Dr Damon Briggs (Frontline, UK).
The book is the culmination of a major multi-jurisdictional research project, the Comparative Youth Penality Project, which analysed policy and practice developments over a 40-year period and comprised the first international comparative study of youth justice and penality in Australia and in England and Wales.

Author speakers
Chris Cunneen, Professor of Criminology, Jumbunna Institute for Indigenous Education and Research, University of Technology Sydney.
Barry Goldson, Professor Emeritus, Department of Sociology, Social Policy and Criminology, University of Liverpool.

Loraine Gelsthorpe, Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice and Director of the Institute of Criminology, University of Cambridge.
Dr Faith Gordon, Senior Lecturer in Law, Australian National University.
Taylor Price, is a Peer Mentor at Youth Ink in London. He is 21 years old and has lived experience of police stations, youth offending services, probation and prison.
Val Weldon, is a 16 year old Wiradjuri and Gamilaraay woman, living in Waterloo, Sydney. Val has spent the last 4 years on bail conditions and on the 9 June 2021 she will be graduating from the Youth Koori Court after 7 months.

More information about the book:

Juvenile Justice in Europe: Past, Present and Future?

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26-27 May 2016 Liverpool, UK

The conference/symposium was organized and hosted by the International Criminological Research Unit (ICRU) at the University of Liverpool in association with the British Society of Criminology (Youth Criminology/Youth Justice Network – BSC YC/YJN) and the European Society of Criminology (Thematic Working Group on Juvenile Justice – ESC TWGJJ).

It addressed a range of pressing questions relating to the historical origins, contemporary manifestations and future prospects for juvenile justice at a juncture when Europe is witnessing major social, economic and political challenges and transformations.

It is a crucial time for juvenile justice in Europe and the conference/symposium comprised a series of plenary presentations delivered by some of Europe’s leading researchers in their respective fields. It also facilitated opportunities for discussion, debate and delegate participation in order to address such questions alongside other past, present and future challenges.

In June 2011 the YC/YJ Network in conjunction with the South West branch of the BSC held a conference on Youth Custody and Human Rights at Plymouth University.

A YC/YJN panel convened at the BSC Annual Conference in Leicester over 11-14 July, 2010. Entitled Youth Justice, Human Rights and Public Criminology.

In January 2011 an edited volume – Youth in Crisis? ‘Gangs’, Territoriality and Violence – was published by Routledge. The book builds upon, extends and develops a series of questions that were initially discussed and debated at a YC/YJN conference in 2009.

In May 2010 a special issue of the BSC journal Criminology and Criminal Justice (Volume 10 Number 2) published, deriving from a YC/YJN conference – Youth Justice and the Policy Process: Messages from Research and Practice – that convened in 2009. The themed issue comprises articles by Professor Mark Drakeford, Professor Barry Goldson, Professor Gordon Hughes, Professor Lesley McAra, Dr Susan McVie and Professor David Smith. Taken together the articles aim not only to advance comparative research but also to interrogate critically the extent to which research-based knowledge and practice-based experience translate into the realms of policy in the youth justice sphere. For more information see:

Joining and staying in touch

The YC/YJN Steering Group  invites suggestions, proposals and/or expressions of interest from interested parties.

The JISCmail list can be accessed at:

Contact the Network

Professor Barry Goldson, School of Sociology and Social Policy, The University of Liverpool, Eleanor Rathbone Building, Liverpool L69 7ZA, England, UK.

Websites of interest

Youth Justice Board –
Human Rights Watch, Juvenile Justice