Jessica Cleary

My PhD Project

I am an Economic and Social Research Council funded part time PhD Student in the Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research at the University of Stirling.

My PhD, supervised by Professor Margaret Malloch and Dr Hannah Graham, examines criminal justice policies, practices and services both imposed on and offered to women with convictions in Scotland. This project aims to provide a robust overview of how the justice sector currently tailors service provision for women beyond the prison, as well as potentially identifying any social, political or operational issues which impact this sector. To do this, the study brings together secondary analysis of key Scottish policies and official discourse; and primary interviews with a wide range of stakeholders within the community justice sector throughout Scotland.

This exploration into the intersectionality of gender, supporting desistance from crime and community based justice support is an area of growing popularity in both policy and academia. Especially within the current emerging landscape of changing Criminal Justice strategies for women and the national restructuring of Community Justice provision this project will not only be relevant for Scotland’s front-line provisions for women, but also for international policies and practices which seek to better support women with convictions. This project will also make noteworthy contributions to the academic development of gender-informed justice scholarship and what is understood by ‘community justice’.

If you would like to be involved in this project or hear more about its progress please get in touch via the links below.

My work with AFKA Scotland

Alongside my PhD, I work part time as a researcher for the Association for Fostering, Kinship and Adoption Scotland, an independent charitable organisation dedicated to improving outcomes for children in care across Scotland. In this part time post I support a range of research projects AFKA Scotland is undertaking in partnership with the Scottish Government and universities across the UK. As well as disseminating research updates and providing support to our practitioner members from across all 32 Scottish Local Authorities to enhance the impact of research in practice.

Previously, within my role with AFKA Scotland, I also undertook a 12-month fixed term post as their Promise Implementation Led in which I supported an organisation-wide redevelopment to ensure the recommendations of the Independent Care Review – the Promise – were embedded throughout our whole change programme.

My Research Interests include:

Qualitative Social Research; Gender Responsive Justice; Community Justice; Criminal Abolitionism; Change Implementation; Service Redesign; Meaningful Inclusion; Intersectional Feminism; and Utopian Thinking