Welcome to the European Society of Criminology Working Group on Prison Life and the Effects of Imprisonment. We are a group of about 50 academics, practitioners, policy makers and students who are interested in research on the effects of custodial sentences, inmates’ adaptation to life in prison, the process of prisoner reentry, and other topics related to imprisonment.

Imprisonment is currently the most severe governmental sanction imposed on criminal offenders in Europe. Approximately one million people are confined in penal institutions across Council of Europe countries, and in two thirds of these countries prison populations have been growing. Therefore, a substantial number of people experience imprisonment and increasing numbers of people are released from prisons back into society. It is, therefore, important to know the impact of imprisonment on the lives of these (ex-)prisoners and their families.

In order to encourage prison research in Europe and to increase international dissemination of prison research results, we have established the ESC working group ‘Prison Life & Effects of Imprisonment’.

Our objectives are:

1) promote communication between European researchers on imprisonment

2) organize thematic sessions at the annual ESC meetings

3) establish international research ties and promote international collaborations on prison research

We meet twice a year: once during the European Society for Criminology Conference and once at a special meeting hosted by one of our members.

On this website, you’ll find information on the members of the working group, information on the working group’s activities, including workshops and publications, and other information that may be relevant for the members of the working group.

Membership to the working group is open to all researchers interested and involved in research on prison life and the effects of imprisonment. If you would like to join us, please send an email to: adirkzwager@nscr.nl

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