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UEL appoints leading cybercrime expert Julia Davidson as Professor of Criminology

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Professor Davidson advises governments and international organisations on cybercrime and child protection

Professor Julia Davidson, one of the UK's foremost experts on policy, practice and offending in the area of young people, cybercrime and cyber victimisation, has been appointed Professor of Criminology at the University of East London (UEL). 

She will take up her new role within the College of Professional Services on 4 July, moving from Middlesex University, where she held the role of Professor of Criminology and Co-Director of the Research Centre for Abuse and Trauma Studies.

Professor Davidson said, “I am looking forward to joining UEL. My research focuses on young people, cybercrime and cyber victimisation in the context of Internet safety, risk and regulation This is a relatively new area of research which is relevant at the local community, national and international levels. 

“I also welcome the opportunity to work closely with local stakeholders in east London on pressing issues such as the involvement of young people in violent crime. I hope that my work will broaden the focus and scope of Criminology at UEL and contribute to the excellent research currently undertaken.”  

Annette Cast, Pro-Vice Chancellor Dean of UEL’s College of Professional Services, said, “I’m delighted to welcome Professor Davidson to UEL. She has an excellent track record in research and advising governments and international agencies. Her expertise and experience will greatly enrich the academic research, teaching, and community engagement here at UEL.”

Professor Davidson plays an active role in key national committees such as the UK Council for Child Internet Safety (Chairs the Evidence Group) and provides expert advice to national and international organisations such as NICE, the Home Office, the National Crime Agency , UNICEF , Europol, the US Sentencing Commission, the US Department of Justice and the UN ITU. 

She is a member of the Europol EC3 Expert Academic Advisory Group, has been a member of the UK Inquiry into institutional child sexual abuse and is now Chair of the Ethics Committee.  She has also recently joined the Board of the International Criminal Court Justice Portal in the Hague.

She has acted as an advisor on child internet safety to governments and practitioners in South America, Africa and the Middle East and North Africa region, recently helping the Kingdom of Bahrain to develop a national Child Internet Safety Framework.

She has directed a vast amount of research spanning 30 years. Recent examples include European Commission funded studies in five EU countries, exploring offender online grooming, and exploring industry and policing practice in the prevention of online child abuse. 

She recently co-directed a study exploring young people’s pathways into cybercrime undertaken in collaboration with the Europol Cybercrime Centre (EC3) and University College Dublin. 

She has written five books and many academic articles. Her latest book, Child Abuse and Protection: Contemporary issues in research, policy and practice, will be published by Routledge this year.

Professor Davidson has worked with the media since 2003, on live and recorded interviews for BBC News and World News, ITV, Channel 4, BBC Radio 4 News and Woman’s Hour. She has also worked on documentaries.

She has a PhD in Criminal Justice Policy from the London School of Economics and Political Science, and was made Honorary Research Fellow at Royal Holloway University of London in May 2010. She has been an Adjunct Professor in the School of Law at Queensland University of Technology, Australia, and is a Fellow of the UK Higher Education Academy.