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In the years since devolution, Scotland has witnessed some quite remarkable shifts in juvenile justice discourse, policy and practice, segueing between the distinctive Kilbrandon-informed welfarist ethos and public interest concerns. Following a period of intense punitiveness, where the adherence to welfarism was almost entirely eroded, the more recent implementation of GIRFEC and WSA have facilitated diversionary measures, reasserted the values and principles of Kilbrandon, and contributed to getting it right for those children and young people drawn into the juvenile justice system.


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Michele Burman is Professor of Criminology and Head of the School of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Glasgow. She is a founding Co-Director of the Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research which is a collaborative research and knowledge exchange research centre involving a partnership between four Scottish Universities. She is also co-Editor-in-Chief of the Sage journal Criminology and Criminal Justice.

Michele has long-standing research and teaching interests in gender, crime and justice, with a particular focus on women’s imprisonment; criminal justice responses to gender-based violence; and young women and youth justice.

Susan McVie is Chair of Quantitative Criminology in the School of Law at the University of Edinburgh. She is Director of the Applied Quantitative Methods Network (AQMeN), a leading research centre focused on advanced research in the areas of crime, education and urban inequalities. She is also Co-Director of the Edinburgh Study of Youth Transitions and Crime (ESYTC), one of the founder members of the Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research (SCCJR) and leader of the Crime and Justice work strand of the Administrative Data Research Centre in Scotland (ADRC-S).

Susan’s research interests and published works focus on crime patterns and trends, youth crime and justice, criminal careers and developmental criminology, crime and space, violence and homicide, and gangs and knife crime. She is the author (with Lesley McAra) of a series of influential articles on youth crime and justice which have had a dramatic impact in reforming the Scottish youth justice system and Scottish school exclusion policies. She sits on a number of influential government committees, including the Building Safer Communities Programme Board and the Independent Advisory Group on Stop and Search in Scotland. She is an editor for the British Journal of Criminology, Youth Justice, and Criminology and Criminal Justice.

In 2013, Susan was awarded (jointly with Lesley McAra) the Howard League for Penal Reform Research Medal. In 2014, she was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. In 2016, she received an OBE for services to social science in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List.

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