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Artikel

Researching elites at the margins of research ethics frameworks

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden code of ethics, corporate crime, research ethics, gaining access, interviewing elites
Auteurs Daniel Beizsley PhD
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    For social scientists undertaking critical research on elites in organisational contexts securing access is a challenging exercise that may rely on the use of several access strategies over extended periods. This process is further complicated by the existence of research ethics frameworks that establish boundaries to access strategies, posing dilemmas on how to best balance access needs with a commitment to ethical practices. This article focuses on such dilemmas – or the ‘ethics of access’ – through a reflection on PhD fieldwork during 2016-2017 in Luxembourg spent researching the European Investment Bank. The paper will conclude by calling for an overhaul of existing frameworks in order to foster more research on elites.


Daniel Beizsley PhD
Daniel Beizsley is a PhD candidate on the European Commission funded Doctorate in Cultural and Global Criminology (DCGC) programme supervised by Utrecht University and ELTE University.
Artikel

Integratief seksindustriebeleid in Nieuw-Zeeland

Succes voor een unieke sociale beweging

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 2 2019
Trefwoorden sekswerk, Nieuw-Zeeland, decriminalisering, sociale beweging, beleidsverandering
Auteurs Dr. Joep Rottier
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Contrary to its allies in other countries, the sex industry decriminalization movement in New Zealand, embodied by the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective (NZPC), achieved its goal in 2003. This article explores the reform of the sex industry policy in this country on the basis of a Social Movement Concept. Apart from the specific New Zealand culture, particularly the interaction between three social political aspects – awareness, political opportunities, and a strong social movement organisation – can be identified as crucial factors in realizing a decriminalized sex industry environment. The enactment of the Prostitution Reform Act 2003 meant a unique and huge success for a small sex workers movement.


Dr. Joep Rottier
Dr. Joep Rottier, onderzoeker, promoveerde in december 2018 aan de Universiteit Utrecht op de effecten van het seksindustrie decriminaliseringbeleid in Nieuw-Zeeland. Hij is bestuurslid van het Platform SekswerkExpertise Nederland.
Artikel

Walk this way

The impact of mobile interviews on sensitive research with street-based sex workers

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden mobile and walking methods, multisensory methods, ethnography, sex work, prostitution, ethical and sensitive research
Auteurs Dr Lucy Neville en Dr Erin Sanders-McDonagh
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This article draws on a piece of ethnographic research carried out with outreach workers in London working with street-based sex workers (SBSWs). The aim of the research was to determine the efficacy of the services offered to this hard-to-reach client group. The charitable organization has a long history (20+ years) working with SBSWs in the Kings Cross area; we evaluated their drop-in and outreach services for this client group, many of whom have high-level needs due to substance misuse and mental health issues. We initially conducted semi-structured interviews with women at the drop-in services, but encountered a number of ethical and logistical issues that prompted us to consider alternative methodological approaches. This article explores our use of mobile interviews with SBSWs and the outreach team who encounter them, which we argue gives us unique insights into the realities and lived experiences of both women who work (and sometimes live) on the street and the outreach team members who engage with this hard-to-reach group. We argue that mobile interviews offer a highly effective way of conducting research with a vulnerable population, and enabled us to gain a unique perspective into best practice around effectively and ethically researching hard-to-reach groups. Critically, we maintain that these walking interviews gave detailed insights into the lives of SBSWs that would not have been possible using more traditional methods. We provide empirical data in this article from these walking interviews, including fieldnote excerpts, and consider the value of using mobile and innovative methods for criminological research with hard-to-reach populations.


Dr Lucy Neville
Dr Lucy Neville is Lecturer in Criminology, University of Leicester.

Dr Erin Sanders-McDonagh
Dr Erin Sanders-McDonagh is Senior Lecturer in Criminology, University of Kent.
Artikel

Conflict narratives and conflict handling strategies in intercultural contexts

Reflections from an action research project based on restorative praxis

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 3 2019
Trefwoorden action research, conflict, restorative justice, intercultural contexts
Auteurs Brunilda Pali
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    A rapidly growing field of research and practice, restorative justice has primarily found its gravitational centre within the criminal justice system, as an alternative of dealing with the aftermath of crime. Less explored remains the application of restorative justice in complex, urban, or intercultural contexts, an application which raises a whole set of conceptual and practical challenges. This article is based on an action project which aimed to research conflict narratives in intercultural contexts and transform them through restorative praxis. Mostly used in educational, organizational, and health care settings, action research remains an underused but a highly interesting methodology for criminology and criminal justice research. Its alternative epistemology makes it particularly apt for scientific projects that aim both at investigating crime and justice related issues and at engendering change, either at the level of criminal justice or communities. Although action research has focused mostly on creating change at the level of practical knowledge, when conceived in a critical manner, action research aims not only at improving the work of practitioners, but also at assisting them to arrive at a critique of their social or work settings. Practice concerns at the same time problem setting or problem framing. By zooming into one of the case studies of the project, more specifically the social housing estates in Vienna, I focus in this article specifically on the tensions and dilemmas created by processes of engagement in a problematizing approach to the context and to practice. During these processes, together with other social actors, such as inhabitants and professionals, we named problems (in our case social conflicts) and framed the context in which we addressed them. I argue that participatory forms of inquiry, such as action research, should actively reframe rather than merely describe contexts and problems they work with.


Brunilda Pali
Brunilda Pali is FWO Postdoctoral researcher, Leuven Institute of Criminology, Leuven, Belgium.
Artikel

Hollandse (on)hebbelijkheden

In gesprek met Chrisje Brants

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 1 2019
Trefwoorden comparative law, Utrecht School, criminal law
Auteurs Dr. Bas van Stokkom en Dr. Renée Kool
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In this article Bas van Stokkom and Renée Kool discuss work and life of the Dutch comparative legal scholar Chrisje Brants. The article is based on an interview the authors conducted with Brants as well as themes that Brants developed in her published work. The article discusses in particular themes such as comparative research, the Utrecht School, and the role of criminal law.


Dr. Bas van Stokkom
Dr. Bas van Stokkom is senior onderzoeker bij de Vaksectie Strafrecht & Criminologie, Faculteit der Rechtsgeleerdheid, Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen.

Dr. Renée Kool
Dr. Renée Kool is universitair hoofddocent bij het Willem Pompe Instituut voor Strafrechtswetenschappen Universiteit Utrecht.
Artikel

De mooie held geveld

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 2 2018
Trefwoorden heroes, downfall, master status, media
Auteurs Prof. dr. Hans Nelen en Dr. Frank van Gemert
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In the introductory article of this special issue on the downfall of popular heroes, some relevant aspects in relation to the general theme are explored. Who are considered to be heroes and which elements are relevant to understand the process heroes may go through when they start sliding on the slippery slope, and, eventually, fall into the abyss of disgrace? What is the role that (social) media play in the demolition of their reputation and how do heroes perceive their own downfall and respond to it? The theoretical concept that is used in this article is Howard Becker’s master status and, in particular, the notion that the master status of a fallen hero surpasses and contaminates all other statuses, previously possessed by an individual.


Prof. dr. Hans Nelen
Prof. dr. Hans Nelen is hoogleraar criminologie aan de Universiteit Maastricht.

Dr. Frank van Gemert
Dr. Frank van Gemert is universitair docent bij de sectie strafrecht en criminologie van de Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.
Artikel

De val van Jacobus Capitein en het debat over omstreden koloniale helden

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 2 2018
Trefwoorden Jacobus Capitein, Atlantic history, Dutch history, slavery, postcolonialism
Auteurs Dr. Karwan Fatah-Black
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    The post-colonial re-evaluation of prominent figures in Dutch history has been resisted fiercely in the public sphere. This article raises the question how lives from the colonial era that are a source of national pride, but are also tainted by their implication in the history of slavery, colonialism and racism can be presented in a way that does justice to their historical context. Jacobus Capitein, who was first enslaved and later became an advocate for slavery in the 1740s, was initially regarded a hero in the eighteenth century, but has received a far more critical evaluation since the second half of the twentieth century. This article takes the way in which professional historians and heritage institutions have dealt with the complex and layered life story of Jacobus Capitein as a model for approaching the lives of the canonical figures of Dutch Atlantic history.


Dr. Karwan Fatah-Black
Dr. Karwan Fatah-Black is universitair docent sociale en economische geschiedenis, Universiteit Leiden.
Artikel

Wel of geen identiteitscontrole? Het dilemma van de ‘rule enforcer’

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 3 2018
Trefwoorden Identity control, Police, Rule enforcer, Selectivity, Discretionary space
Auteurs Dra Inès Saudelli
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    It is common knowledge that the police in executing its duty as “rule enforcer” disposes of certain discretionary powers. Because of the heavy workload and the often ambiguous legislation, the police officer needs to decide on a selective basis when, how and towards whom he/she will act. These discretionary powers are present in proactive identity controls and already provoked strong reactions in the past. The media accused the police of over-controlling certain minority groups. With this ethnographic study into the Belgian practice of identity controls, in which we observe and interview police officers, we wish to get a better view of the way in which identity controls are executed. Although the research is still ongoing, we have already been able to establish that the decision-making process is based on a police feeling which police officers claim to have and which is formed by (a combination of) different triggers attracting their attention.


Dra Inès Saudelli
Inès Saudelli Onderzoeker criminologie, Vrije Universiteit Brussel ines.saudelli@vub.ac.be
Artikel

Een inkijk in het leiderschap van Cannabis Social Clubs in België: criminelen, activisten, modelburgers?

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 3 2018
Trefwoorden Cannabis, Cannabis Social Club, Leadership, Cannabis movement, Stigma
Auteurs Dr. Mafalda Pardal
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In this article, Cannabis Social Clubs (CSCs) are understood as being social movement organizations advocating for the legalization of a closed, cooperative and non-profit model for cannabis supply among adult users. Drawing on qualitative data collected in Belgium, this paper analyses how one becomes a leader of a CSC as well as the functional role assumed by those individuals. It further unveils how Belgian CSC leaders’ engagement in those organizations and in the wider cannabis movement is perceived. We identify and discuss the techniques employed by those key activists to manage cannabis-related stigma drawing on a framework developed by Lindblom and Jacobsson’s (2014). While CSCs might contribute to normalizing cannabis use and supply, our analysis suggests that CSC leaders face some degree of stigmatization, shifting between conformist and confrontational techniques to manage the perceived cannabis-related stigma. Building on the case of Belgian CSC leaders, this paper makes a contribution to the understanding of an under-researched movement, and the role of the leaders within it, expanding also the application of Lindblom and Jacobsson’s (2014) framework to a novel area of activism.


Dr. Mafalda Pardal
Mafalda Pardal Postdoctorale onderzoeker BOF, Universiteit Gent mafalda.pardal@ugent.be
Artikel

Artsen en moreel ondernemerschap. De casus van de normalisering van verslavende opioïde pijnstillers in de Verenigde Staten

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 3 2018
Trefwoorden Opioid crisis, Addictive painkillers, Medical doctors, Moral entrepreneurs, Big Pharma
Auteurs Dr. Thaddeus Müller
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    In this article, I am using Becker’s concept of moral entrepreneur to analyse the role of pain specialists in the labelling process, which has led to the normalisation of the use of opioid painkillers in the United States and ultimately to the death over 200.000 Americans. In general, the literature on labelling centres on crusading reformers, and the criminalisation and stigmatisation of transgressive behaviour. Here I will focus on the moral entrepreneurship of medical experts. What was their role in the normalisation process of opioid painkiller use and are there any similarities with the strategies of crusading reformers? My findings, based on qualitative analysis of documents such as newspaper articles and academic publications, show that, with two exceptions, pain specialists use the strategies of moral crusaders. First, in their narratives, pain specialists represented themselves as neutral objective experts without the emotional stance of moral crusaders. The second exception, which is related to the first, is that there was less emphasis in their narrative on creating villains, as they could not blame openly standard medical practice because they needed the support of the established medical world in order to normalise and legalise opioid painkillers.


Dr. Thaddeus Müller
Thaddeus Müller Docent criminologie, Lancaster University t.muller@lancaster.ac.uk
Artikel

State-corporate crime en niet-democratische regimes: betrokkenheid van bedrijven in internationale misdrijven

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 1 2018
Trefwoorden state-corporate crime, international crimes, state crime, business and human rights
Auteurs Annika van Baar MA MSc
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Most state-corporate crime research is focused on crime or harmful outcomes in or by democratic states. The goal of this article is to investigate the applicability of this concept to relations between economic actors and non-democratic state actors. The concept of state-corporate crime is applied to three contexts in which corporations have become involved in international crimes such as genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity. Each representing a turning point in the academic and public perception of ‘business and human rights’, the contexts that are analysed are Nazi Germany (1993-1945), Apartheid South Africa (1948-1994) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC; 1996-now). It is concluded that in non-democratic states with totalitarian of authoritarian regimes (such as Nazi Germany and Apartheid South Africa), the concept of state-corporate crime is applicable and explanatory. In such strong states, economic and state actors make use of mutual benefits while, on the whole, state-interests prevail. As a result, the harmful outcome of the dynamics between corporations and states can best be described as corporate facilitated state crime. In weak states (such as the DRC) economic actors are generally more powerful while their involvement in international crimes also runs via non-state actors. The blurred lines between economic actors and state actors (and their interests) makes it difficult to apply the concept, in its different forms, to state-corporate cooperation in weak states and ‘new’ wars.


Annika van Baar MA MSc
Annika van Baar, MA MSc, is post-doc onderzoeker Resilient Societies – Resilient Rule of Law, Faculteit Recht, Economie, Bestuur en Organisatie, Universiteit Utrecht. E-mail: a.vanbaar@uu.nl.
Artikel

Het ‘cyborg crime’-perspectief

Theoretische vernieuwing in het digitale tijdperk

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 1 2018
Trefwoorden cybercrime, cyborg, cyborg crime, Actor-Netwerk theory, Latour
Auteurs Wytske van der Wagen MsC
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This study departs from the notion that current high-tech crime developments bring various new challenges for the rather anthropocentric, instrumental and dualistic theoretical repertoire of criminology. The article reflects on these challenges and proposes the alternative ‘cyborg crime’ perspective. This concept is the result of an explorative research on the theoretical potential of the actor-network theory (ANT) for cybercrime. The study concludes that ANT and the ensuing cyborg crime perspective enables to grasp certain dimensions of cybercrime more profoundly. ANT can move us (criminologists) beyond the classical novelty debate surrounding cybercrime and stimulate theoretical innovation.


Wytske van der Wagen MsC
Wytske van der Wagen, MSc, is als universitair docent verbonden aan de sectie criminologie van de Erasmus Law School. E-mail: vanderwagen@law.eur.nl.
Artikel

Emotions and Explanation in Cultural Criminology

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 1 2018
Trefwoorden cultural criminology, emotions, affective states, explanation, theory
Auteurs dr. Nicolás Trajtenberg
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Cultural Criminology (CC) is one of the most recent and exciting developments in criminological theory. Its main argument is that mainstream criminological theories provide inadequate explanations of crime due to epistemological and theoretical flaws. CC’s alternative involves assuming a phenomenological and interpretative approach that focuses on the cultural and emotional components of crime. In this article I shall argue that although CC makes a valid demand for more realistic and complex explanations of crime, its own alternative needs to deal with two main challenges referred to its conceptualization of explanation and emotion. First, two problematic antagonisms should be avoided: understanding vs. causal explanation; and universal nomothetic explanations as opposed to ideographic descriptions. Considering recent developments in philosophy of social science, particularly the ‘social mechanisms approach’, CC should focus on explaining retrospectively through identification of specific causal mechanisms rejecting universal and predictive pretensions. Second, although cultural criminologists rightly question the emotionless character of criminological explanations, they lack an articulated alternative conceptualization of emotions to explain crime. A more refined concept needs to be elaborated in dialogue with recent advances in social sciences.


dr. Nicolás Trajtenberg
Dr. Nicolás Trajtenberg is senior lecturer and researcher at the Department of Sociology, Universidad de la República (UdelaR), Uruguay. He holds a PhD in criminology by the Institute of Criminology, University of Cambridge, UK. His main areas of research are explanation and theory in criminology, and youth violence. E-mail: nico.trajtenberg@gmail.com.
Artikel

Selectieve ‘culturalisering’ in de praktijk van de jeugdbescherming in België

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 3 2017
Trefwoorden youth justice, Roma, Caucasian migrants, refugees, selectivity, deviance
Auteurs dr. Olga Petintseva
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This paper focuses on the practice of youth justice (termed ‘youth protection’ in Belgium) in which professional actors ascribe deviant behaviour of youngsters to different cultural and migration backgrounds. Intra-European Roma migrants and refugees from the Northern Caucasus in Belgium are chosen as case studies. Discourse analysis of 55 youth court files and 41 expert interviews with professional actors show that deviant behaviour of these young people is explained in different manners. Two discourses are identified: ‘criminal vagabonds’ and ‘war torn children’. These discourses and their effects in practice differ tremendously for both groups. The broader discussion this article touches upon is the selective inclusion and exclusion in the institutions of formal social control, through social practices of culturalisation.


dr. Olga Petintseva
dr. Olga Petintseva is doctor-assistent aan de vakgroep criminologie, strafrecht en sociaal recht, Universiteit Gent. Haar onderzoeksinteresse situeert zich binnen de narratieve criminologie, cultuurstudies en sociolinguïstiek. E-mail: olga.petintseva@ugent.be.
Diversen

Access_open ‘The closer you are the more information you get’ – interview met professor Emanuel Marx

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 3 2017
Trefwoorden etnographic research, Violence, Manchester school, going native
Auteurs prof. dr. Dina Siegel
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This is an interview with one of the most important social anthropologists of the 20th century – prof. Emanuel Marx.


prof. dr. Dina Siegel
Prof. dr. Dina Siegel is hoogleraar criminologie bij het Willem Pompe Instituut voor Strafrechtswetenschappen, Universiteit Utrecht. E-mail: dina.s@uu.nl.
Artikel

Hoe IS-glossy Dabiq harten van westerse moslims wint

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 2 2017
Trefwoorden jihadism, radicalization, propaganda, denial, Dabiq
Auteurs Dr. mr. Fiore Geelhoed, Layla van Wieringen MSc., Kyra van den Akker BSc. e.a.
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    IS propaganda is assumed to contribute to radicalization of Western Muslims. How IS propaganda reaches the hearts and minds of Western Muslims and consequently fuels radicalization is nonetheless an understudied topic. Through content analysis of all fifteen issues of IS-glossy Dabiq this article demonstrates how IS propaganda works in Dabiq. First, IS attunes in Dabiq to factors that foster radicalization according to the literature. IS does so by its discussion in Dabiq of injustice done to Muslims worldwide, the image of the Western enemy, and its positive presentation of the individual and group identity of IS fighters. Second, in Dabiq IS paves the way for embracing violent means, such as terrorist attacks on Western civilians through a discourse of ‘denial’.


Dr. mr. Fiore Geelhoed
Dr. mr. Fiore Geelhoed werkt als universitair docent bij de sectie Criminologie van de Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam. Zij verricht onderzoek naar radicalisering en in het bijzonder de betekenis die radicalisering heeft voor geradicaliseerde moslims, levensverhalen, subculturen en de betrokkenheid van bekeerlingen bij jihadistische groeperingen.

Layla van Wieringen MSc.
Layla van Wieringen, BSc., is werkzaam bij de Hulplijn Radicalisering in Utrecht. Eerder heeft zij de bacheloropleiding Criminologie aan de Vrije Universiteit afgerond. Verder heeft zij de master Investigative and Legal Psychology aan het United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute gevolgd.

Kyra van den Akker BSc.
Kyra van den Akker, BSc., volgt in aansluiting op de bacheloropleiding Criminologie de master Opsporingscriminologie aan de Vrije Universiteit.

Fleur Crolla BSc.
Fleur Crolla, BSc., volgt de master Crisis and Security Management aan de Universiteit Leiden en de master Opsporingscriminologie aan de Vrije Universiteit. Daarvoor heeft zij de bacheloropleiding Criminologie aan de Vrije Universiteit afgerond.

Irene Senatori MSc.
Irene Senatori, MSc., heeft de bachelor- en masteropleiding Criminologie aan de Vrije Universiteit afgerond.
Boekbespreking

Positieve veiligheid en het verlangen naar gemeenschap

Naar een criminologie van vredesopbouw

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 3 2016
Trefwoorden positive criminology, peace-making criminology, security, community
Auteurs Dr. Bas van Stokkom
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Positive criminology criticizes punitive measures, repression, crime control and the ‘politics of fear’, and re-values positive concepts as trust, solidarity, well-being and ‘ontological security’. In this book-review it is argued that many of these positive terms are beyond the scope of criminology and that peace and peace-making are more appropriate terms that can be used within a criminological context. Peacemaking criminology provides a basis for constructive approaches to conflicts and disorder; it may also outline the contours of the peace-making function of the law and the peacekeeping tasks of judges and police officers.


Dr. Bas van Stokkom
Dr. Bas van Stokkom is verbonden aan de vaksectie Strafrecht & Criminologie van de Faculteit der Rechtsgeleerdheid, Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen.
Discussie

Access_open Positieve criminologie

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 3 2016
Trefwoorden securitas, rule of law, Polizeiwissenschaft, politeia, democracy
Auteurs prof. dr. Bob Hoogenboom
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Positive security is a very promising development in criminology. The ‘movement’ reconnects the current debate on crime with the origins of ancient Greek thinking on the positive nature of politeia, policy and policing. Securitas - providing safety and security for the common good - has a long and rich tradition. Good governance is about many things, but foremost about providing security in society. Polizeiwissenschaft in 18th and 19th century Prussia made a distinction between Wohlfahrt- and Sicherheitspolizei.
    The latter is outright dangerous because security becomes equated with negative connotations: the other, the enemies of the state, the drug war and more recently the war in terror. In times like these the positive qualities of securitas become inflated. Human rights, privacy and the rule of law are no longer viewed in positive terms. Therefore I advocate the positive security movement. But the author is worried about two things. Firstly, the current Zeitgeist which is charged with xenophobia and war like languages. And, secondly the fact that the ‘movement’ is limited to a few rebels with a cause. The mainstream of criminology is not really interested in reconnecting with the philosophical positive roots of securitas. Mainstream criminology fosters the status quo and is financially too depended on the state to actually follow the new heroes of positivity. The only way out is to develop a following but this requires academics to actually take a stand.


prof. dr. Bob Hoogenboom
Prof. dr. Bob Hoogenboom is hoogleraar fraude en regulering aan de Nyenrode Business Universiteit.
Discussie

UNGASS 2016: in de Weense houdgreep

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 2 2016
Trefwoorden UNGASS, drug policy, war on drugs, harm reduction
Auteurs Pien Metaal MA
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    This contribution aims to discuss the main outcomes of the recent UNGASS (United Nations General Assembly Special Session) on Drugs that took place in New York from 19 to 21 April 2016. Based on my own participation in the preparatory discussions and political negotiations as civil society representative (through the work of NGO Transnational Institute), I argue that political divisions and entrenched institutional dynamics have transformed what could have been the beginning of the end of the war on drugs into a wasted opportunity for changing the status quo of the present world regime regarding the production, trafficking and use of illegal drugs. Despite high initial expectations after several governments expressed a clear concern about the effects of purely repressive policies, and the UN decision to organize the session 3 years earlier than planned, very soon it was clear that the session would not imply real changes in the current policies. The agenda setting was non-transparent and controlled by the most conservative factions and countries, largely excluding the views from NGO’s and academics in the final adopted resolution. The final document poorly reflects the rich discussions and developments that are taking place in many countries of the world, particularly the debates and policy developments in ‘the Americas’. A positive note is that the unchanged international UN conventions on drugs can hardly cope with developments taking place on cannabis policies in countries such as Canada, Uruguay, United States or Jamaica. Also other countries are more and more prepared to push for change on other essential questions, including the application of death penalty for drug offences, the access to controlled medicines, or the explicit application of ‘harm reduction’ approaches.


Pien Metaal MA
Pien Metaal, MA, is programmacoördinator van het Drugs & Democracy programma van het Transnational Institute (TNI), waar ze werkzaam is sinds 2002. Ze heeft veel artikelen, rapporten en bijdragen voor boeken geschreven over drugsbeleid in Latijns Amerika sinds 1996.
Artikel

Cannabis Social Clubs through the lens of the drug user movement

Tijdschrift Tijdschrift over Cultuur & Criminaliteit, Aflevering 2 2016
Trefwoorden Cannabis Social Clubs, supply, cannabis policy, self-organization, drug user movement
Auteurs Mafalda Pardal MSc
SamenvattingAuteursinformatie

    Cannabis Social Clubs (CSCs) are a model of non-profit production and distribution of cannabis among a closed circuit of adult cannabis users. The CSC model can thus be seen as a middle-ground option between prohibition and full (legal) commercialization. Initially founded in Spain during the 1990s, this form of collectives has emerged elsewhere in Europe (notably in Belgium), mainly as a result of grassroots initiatives and self-regulation. Uruguay remains the only jurisdiction to have legalized and regulated the CSC model. This paper discusses the goals and practices of CSCs against the backdrop of the drug user movement. Our goal is to draw a comparison to other drug users’ organizations and to identify knowledge gaps to be addressed in future research into CSCs. In this analysis, we rely on a review of the relevant literature in this field and on preliminary findings from an ongoing study examining CSCs in Belgium. A preoccupation with reducing the harms associated with drug use seems to be an underlying guiding principle for CSCs and other drug users’ organizations, but further research into CSCs’ practices is needed to understand whether and how those are implemented. We found other common points between the broader drug user movement and the efforts of CSCs, both in terms of potential pitfalls and areas for positive impact. We suggest that the model warrants additional attention from both the research and policy-making community.


Mafalda Pardal MSc
Mafalda Pardal, MSc, is onderzoekster en doctoraatskandidate aan het Instituut voor Sociaal Drugsonderzoek, Universiteit Gent, België). Momenteel werkt zij aan een driejarig onderzoeksproject rond de cannabis social clubs in België. Daarvoor werkte zij als analiste bij RAND Europe, waar ze onderzoek deed rond drugsbeleid, migratie en strafrechtelijk beleid.
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