New Criminology Hires Strengthen Interdisciplinary Approach in EPPS

Dr. Denis Dean

Dr. Denis Dean

Two new criminology professors joined the School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences (EPPS) this fall, adding expertise in police-community relations and the use of geospatial information sciences to solve crime.

Dr. Jonathan Maskaly, assistant professor of criminology, is a former police officer who researches communities and crime. Dr. Andrew P. Wheeler, assistant professor of criminology, is an expert in using geospatial information sciences to map and analyze crime patterns.

The professors build on EPPS’ interdisciplinary approach to social sciences and its strength in quantitative analytics, said Dr. Denis Dean, dean of EPPS.

“Dr. Wheeler’s strong background in geospatial information sciences for crime mapping and in the statistical analysis of crime data fit both of these areas. Dr. Wheeler will be an asset not only for the criminology program, but for the whole school,” Dean said.

“Dr. Maskaly focuses on what is probably the most prominent public issue facing policing today: The relationship between police and the publics they serve. This issue expands beyond criminology into public policy, political science, sociology and other areas,” Dean said. “Dr. Maskaly is perfectly positioned to contribute to interdisciplinary teaching and research of this vital topic.”

EPPS has degree programs in criminology, economics, geospatial information sciences, international political economy, political science, public affairs, public policy, sociology and political economy, and justice administration and leadership.


New Tenure-Track Faculty

Jonathan Maskaly

Dr. Jonathan Maskaly

Dr. Jonathan Maskaly, assistant professor of criminology

Previously: visiting assistant professor, University of Illinois at Chicago, Department of Criminology, Law and Justice

Research interests: police, communities and crime; police-community relationships, psychometrics and quantitative methods

Quote: “Recent events have made it clear there is a social and criminological imperative to improve police-community relations. What is less clear is how we go about doing that. Our understanding of — and subsequent ability to improve — this issue is hindered by constrained theoretical imagination in conjunction with a staggering lack of data. Many of the explanations for the current state of police-community relationships are developed without acknowledging either the inherently endogenous nature of police-community relationships or the contextual variation that characterizes American policing. Making true progress will require both robust theoretical and empirical work.”

Dr. Andrew Wheeler

Dr. Andrew P. Wheeler

Dr. Andrew P. Wheeler, assistant professor of criminology

Previously: PhD student, University at Albany, State University of New York

Research interests: spatial analysis of crime and criminal behavior, evaluation of policing and crime reduction policies

Quote: “There are two current hard problems in policing that I hope to make a dent in in my career. One is identifying effective strategies to reduce crime long term — not just for a short period. The second is finding the right balance for proactive policing — in particular the amount of discretionary stops in high-crime minority neighborhoods. We know there are negative externalities from making too many stops, but I think there is opportunity to make fewer, higher-quality stops and still have the same deterrent effect as many more lower-quality stops would.”


New Faculty Series

News Center is publishing profiles of tenured and tenure-track professors who have recently joined the University. The following school profiles have been published:

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