UC Hastings Professor Hadar Aviram will begin her term as the president of the Western Society of Criminology (WSC) after serving as its vice president this past year. The WSC is a regional professional society devoted to the scientific study of crime and attracts scholars, students, government officials, and practitioners from both the public and private sectors from around the world. “It's a wonderful association, I'm really proud of it and I'm delighted to have this opportunity.”
As president of the WSC, Professor Aviram will spearhead the annual meeting, lead initiatives, supervise the peer-review journal, and manage day-to-day affairs of the association and how the association interacts with the broader professional world.
The WSC annual meeting will be in Las Vegas this year from Thursday, February 9, 2017 through Saturday, February 11, 2017. “This year’s focus is going to be on how we interact with the changes on the federal level and their impact on criminal justice and crime control in the Western region.”
The annual meeting will not only feature the usual panels of luminaries and experts, but also papers from five UC Hastings students: 3L Charles Dickson with a paper on a philosophical analysis of the criminalization of drug addicts; 3L Stephan Ferris with a paper on political-legal analysis of Prop. 60 and its aftermath; 2L Amy McKelvey with paper on a comparison of U.S. and U.K. interrogation techniques and the impact of PACE interrogation techniques on false confessions; 2L Chanel Ortiz with a paper on juvenile crime in Finland as a welfare/care issue; and 2L Pablo Wudka-Robles with a paper on jailhouse phone calls and adoptive admissions. “I’m very excited that we get to give these students this academic opportunity to engage with others who study crime and criminal justice.”
This year’s meeting has particular national relevance as at least one of the WSC’s international members will be unable to attend the conference because of the recent travel ban. “For my first act as president, I hope to pass a statement against this ban, highlighting the damage the ban is going to do to our ability to research the causes of crime, law enforcement and the criminal process worldwide, and to see how we can help our members whose professional lives are afflicted by the ban.”
In addition to the annual meeting, the WSC produces a scholarly, online, peer-review journal, the Journal of Criminology, Criminal Law & Society (CCJCLS) that promotes understanding of the causes of crime; the methods used to prevent and control crime; the institutions, principles, and actors involved in the apprehension, prosecution, punishment, and reintegration of offenders; and the legal and political framework under which the justice system and its primary actors operate.
Prior to joining the UC Hastings faculty in 2007, Hadar Aviram practiced as a military defense attorney in the Israel Defense Forces for five years, completed her M.A. in Criminology at Hebrew University of Jerusalem and her Ph.D. in UC Berkeley's Jurisprudence and Social Policy program, where she studied as a Fulbright Fellow and a Regents Intern, and taught at Tel Aviv University. Professor Aviram’s research focuses on the criminal justice system and examines policing, courtroom practices, and broad policy decisions through social science perspectives. Her methodology often combines quantitative, qualitative and experimental tools. Professor Aviram’s most recent projects and publications, including her forthcoming book Cheap on Crime: Recession-Era Politics and the Transformation of American Punishment (University of California Press) analyze the impact of the financial crisis on the American correctional landscape and on California corrections in particular. She is currently working on her second book, Yesterday’s Monsters, which examines the parole hearings of the Manson “family” members.