Welcome to the website for the Irvine Laboratory for the Study of Space and Crime (ILSSC) in the Department of Criminology, Law and Society at the University of California, Irvine. Our group is dedicated to researching the social ecology of crime at all levels of analysis including street segments, blocks, neighborhoods, cities, counties, and metropolitan areas. Our research addresses questions related to three broad categories within the social ecology of crime:
1) Foundational issues including the dynamics of urban crime, the micro-environment of crime, and the role of local institutional resources for fighting crime;
2) Enduring challenges including inequality, concentrated poverty and concentrated affluence, the spatial clustering of multiple social problems, and trends in immigration and other demographic population shifts; and
3) Contemporary challenges including the housing crisis and foreclosures, economic redevelopment and gentrification, and policing strategies and police community relations.
To accomplish this research, the members of the lab utilize cutting-edge techniques. These approaches involve:
– utilizing social media data and geocomputational techniques to create novel measures of the social ecology;
– employing web scraping to obtain crime data and other unique data sources;
– spatially combining datasets capturing different characteristics of the social ecology;
– developing innovative techniques to principally impute data spatially to different aggregate units;
– creating spatially explicit measures of interest;
– using sophisticated statistical techniques in our analysis.
Our team seeks to generate high quality scientific research on the space-crime nexus. Our work is explicitly theory-driven. We aim to foster intellectual exchange among faculty, graduate students, and undergraduate students at the University of California, Irvine together with our our collaborators and community partners.
ILSSC is a subsidiary of the Metropolitan Futures Initiative (MFI).
To see a presentation about the ILSSC see our video:
To learn more about ILSSC ongoing research, see our research page.