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Renowned criminologist lectures at York

Posted on 4 October 2016

A prominent biological criminologist will speak on the psychology of the criminal brain at the University of York this week.

Professor Adrian Raine

Adrian Raine, Professor of Criminology, Psychiatry, and Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania and an honorary graduate of the University of York, will lecture on The criminal brain: Implications for prevention, protection and punishment on Thursday 6 October.

Addressing the biological roots of crime, Professor Raine will present how brain impairments raise the odds of some children growing up to become psychopaths and violent criminals.

Ethical questions explored will include: can we use brain scans to better predict future violence in order to maintain a more orderly society; and if offenders are not responsible for their brain abnormalities, should we punish them as harshly as we do?

Professor Raine studied at Oxford University and the University of York before working as a prison psychologist, a lecturer and Director of the Mauritius Child Health project. Emigrating to the USA in 1987, he was endowed with the Robert G. Wright Professorship of Psychology at USC in 1999, and is now the University of Pennsylvania's fourth “Penn Integrates Knowledge Professor” in recognition of his impact in the applied field of neurocriminology.

Achieving international recognition for his research, he has won 18 awards, and published five books and over 350 journal articles.

He said: “I’m thrilled to be back at York where I began my PhD 39 years ago. Since then I’ve been studying the biological basis of criminal behavior, and I’m really looking forward to this opportunity to engage with the community in answering some difficult questions.

“Are criminal brains different to ours? What causes these brain differences? And what does this mean for society in terms of predicting, preventing, and punishing criminal behavior? I hope to see you there!”

The event takes place at 6.30pm in room SLB/118, Spring Lane building, Campus West, University of York. Tickets are free and a drinks reception will follow the lecture.

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