Volume 5, Issue 2, July 2004
As co-editors of the Western Criminology Review, we are proud to present the second issue of Volume 5. We believe that all of the pieces included in this issue represent significant contributions to the criminological literature. Approximately two years ago when we took over as editors of the journal, we decided that our highest priority was to ensure that WCR be an important outlet for quality research. We hope readers will agree with us that the empirical studies and reviews included here go a long way toward accomplishing this goal.
In the first article, George E. Higgins and Melissa Ricketts propose that the concept of freedom plays a key mediating role in the effects of low self-control. The authors make a strong theoretical argument for the inclusion of freedom in the General Theory model, and estimated coefficients from structural equation models generally support the authors' propositions.
The next paper uses data collected from seventy-four Canadian parole officers, who were asked to answer one important, open-ended question regarding what is most vital for parolees to succeed in the first few months after release. In this paper, Jason Brown uses multidimensional scaling and cluster analysis to find common themes and perspectives on what factors are most essential in preventing recidivism in the offenders' most risky time period.
Taiping Ho and Jerome McKean present and test the proposition that among residents there is a negative, reciprocal relationship between confidence in the police and perceptions of risk for victimization. Using data from citizens of Asheville, North Carolina, the authors find support for their claim, and explore possible causal mechanisms for this inverse relationship.
In the final feature article, Mitchell Chamlin and John K. Cochran explore the tendency of macro-criminologists to employ a certain method of accounting for population size, as well as the implications of using this method of measurement has on results and conclusions. Using a data set representing 271 cities, the authors find that the population size-crime relationship may be more important than previous studies suggest.
In addition to the Feature Articles, this issue contains several book reviews in the Commentary section. In the first review, Russ Immarigeon examines A Restorative Justice Reader: Texts, Sources, and Contexts by the Victim Offender Mediation Association (2003: Willan), which is a 510-page compilation of material on theory and practice of restorative justice, including sources drawn from numerous countries. Sharon Chamard examines Graeme R. Newman and Ronald V. Clarke's Superhighway Robbery: Preventing E-commerce Crime (2003: Willan) in the second book review, which applies a situational crime prevention model to the new areas of deviance in cyberspace. Finally, Egan Kyle Green discusses the newest edition of Ethics in Crime and Justice: Dilemmas and Decisions (2004: Wadsworth) by Joycelyn M. Pollock, which both practitioners and academics will find quite useful.
The final portions of this issue include the Conference Proceedings for the 2004 Western Society of Criminology Annual Conference in Long Beach, which was held February 19-22. A review of the paper abstracts reveals the strong quality of theoretical and analytic development that is taking place among society members, and the enormous impact these contributions are having on practical applications.We also have included a Call for Papers for the next WSC Conference, which will be held in Hawaii on February 17-20, 2005. We strongly encourage everyone to come and present the latest research they are working on.
One of the goals Steve and I set when we assumed editorial responsibilities of the journal was to expand its dissemination. Even though it is a freely available electronic journal, many people use a handful of reputable abstracting services to locate documents. Association with some of these abstracting service rather than Internet-based searching will serve to enhance our capacity to disseminate the journal. One of the primary entities that we set our sights on was EBSCOhost, due to its wide use by students and researchers in virtually all disciplines.
Steve and I played email/phone tag with EBSCO for a year and a half,
and I am pleased to report that we finally accomplished our goal. In June,
Steve finalized our contract with EBSCO to begin indexing the journal.
Currently, they are in the process of abstracting the contents of past
issues so it will take a several months before we are bundled with all
of their different services.
We have not been given an ETA on when you will be able to link through your respective agencies/institutions to search EBSCO for our journal, but we suspect that within the next academic cycle the journal will be available. The journal will continue to remain at its present location and freely available to everyone. However, we expect that contracting with this abstracting service will expand our distribution and citation counts.
We would like to take a moment to thank Dominique Biven for her tireless assistance with most facets of the journal. She has been instrumental to the development and operations of this journal over the last few years. Ms. Biven will continue to assist in a reduced capacity for the next few months to sort out loose ends as we begin to transition to a new editorial staff. Ms. Biven recently completed her undergraduate degree and is beginning her next level of education. We wish her luck in her future endeavors, though we are certain she will not need it.
This change corresponds with formalization of our plans to pass the Western Criminology Review to a new editorial team. Drs. Sharon Chamard and Andre Rosay of the University of Alaska at Anchorage will begin to process new submissions in October of this year. To ensure a smooth transition and to complete reviews on outstanding manuscripts, Steve and I will complete the special Environmental Criminology and Crime Analysis issue (Volume 5, Number 3) in the fall, and we will publish our final volume in February/ March 2005. At which time, Sharon and Andre will assume full responsibility for the Journal. We firmly believe that their combined web-based experience, scholarship, creativity, and dedication will continue the tradition of excellence established by the Journal's founding editor, Patrick Jackson.
We hope you enjoy the issue, and please don't hesitate to give us feedback.
Gisela Bichler, Ph.D.
Stephen Tibbetts, Ph.D.
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