Sharon Grace

BSocSc (Manchester), MA(Econ) (Manchester)

  • Lecturer in Social Policy
  • Programme Convenor for Applied Social Science (Crime and Criminal Justice)

Visit Sharon Grace's profile on the York Research Database to see a full list of publications and browse her research related activities.



Areas of expertise

  • Victimisation
  • Illicit drug use
  • Criminal careers
  • Administration of justice


It was whilst studying for my first degree in Social Policy at Manchester that I first developed an interest in criminology - an interest which has subsequently dictated my whole career. My Masters degree, was not, as the title might suggest, in Economics but in Applied Social Research. My dissertation looked at the ways in which the media represent women who kill.

I joined the Home Office Research and Planning Unit in 1989 and over the following ten years conducted and managed research in a number of areas: women and the criminal justice system, child witnesses, rape, domestic violence, legal controls of obscene materials, and policing and prosecution. I also spent a fascinating year at the Crown Prosecution Service managing their research programme. This year sparked an interest in the relationship between the police and the CPS in the prosecution process which has usefully fed into my teaching at York.

Having moved to York in 1999, I worked freelance for the Home Office for five years (whilst bringing up my two children) mainly as an editor and proof reader and undertaking small research projects.

I was then in 2003 invited by Hull University to do some guest lecturing. A similar collaboration with York then followed - finally resulting in my coming to teach on the crime pathway in the Applied Social Science degree in 2005 for which I am now the programme convenor. In 2012, we launched a BA in Criminology which is a combined degree taught by Social Policy and Sociology. I have been the Chair of the Board of Studies for that new degree since its inception.

During 2013/14, I was involved in an evaluation of pilot Drug Recovery Wings in two women prisons in the UK examining the effectiveness of this approach to aiding women to recover from their drug use. I am currently writing an article based on this research exploring how such approaches might usefully be expanded into the community to provide continuity of care in line with recommendations made in the Corston Report on women with particular vulnerabilities in the prison system.

I am currently involved in a formative evaluation of the new Anti-Social Behaviour Hub at York City Council looking at how an inter-agency response can improve victim satisfaction. A longer evaluation will follow in 2015/16.



Research interests and current projects

  • Evaluation of the City of York Council/North Yorkshire Police Anti-Social Behaviour Hub
  • Scoping Study on Working with Drug Using Women Offenders

Newly released research articles

  • Grace, S., Page, G., Lloyd, C., Templeton, L., Kougali, Z., McKeganey, N., ... Russell, C. (2016). Establishing a ‘Corstonian’ continuous care pathway for drug using female prisoners: linking Drug Recovery Wings and Women’s Community Services.Criminology and criminal justice. article (PDF  , 433kb)
  • Page, G., Templeton, L., Grace, S., Roberts, P., Mckegany, N., Russell, C., ... Lloyd, C. (2015). Conspicuous by their abstinence:: the limited engagement of heroin users in English and Welsh Drug Recovery Wings. International Journal of Drug Policy, 1-38. 10.1016/j.drugpo.2015.12.006 article (PDF  , 331kb) 

PHD supervision interests

  • Criminal justice policy and practice
  • Drug policy and practice
  • Women drug users
  • Women offenders with complex needs/vulnerabilities (including drug use)



Sharon Grace

Contact details

Sharon Grace

Tel: 01904 32 1225