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Institute of Criminology



Professor Friedrich Lösel, Ph.D., is an emeritus Professor at the Institute of Criminology (IoC), University of Cambridge, and the Institute of Psychology (IoP) at the Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg (FAU), Germany. At both places he is still carrying out externally funded research project as an honorary fellow. FL was director of the IoC from 2005-12 and director of the IoP from 1987-2011. Formerly, he was professor of psychology at the Universities of Bielefeld and Erlangen, a tenured senior lecturer at Bamberg University and a lecturer at Erlangen University. He was also director of the Social Sciences Research Centre at Nuremberg and principal investigator at the Advanced Research Centres "Prevention and Intervention in Childhood and Adolescence" and "Socialization and Communication" of the German Research Foundation. He is a chartered forensic psychologist, member of Wolfson College, and Senior Professor at the Psychological University Berlin.  

FL has carried out research on origins of juvenile delinquency, aggression and violence, prison staff, correctional treatment, self-control, developmental prevention of antisocial behavior, football hooliganism, school bullying, psychopathic personality disorder,  alternatives to remand prisons, protective factors and resilience, marital satisfaction, child abuse, early family education, prisoners and their families, nurseries and child development, extremism and radicalization, therapy for sexual offenders, socialization and deviant behavior, the crime drop, evaluation methods, and other topics. He has published about 425 articles in journals and books and is author or editor of 38 books, research monographs and special journal issues.

Among his current research projects is the 'Erlangen-Nuremberg Development and Prevention Study', a combined longitudinal and experimental study of over 600 children and their families that started at preschool age and has been running for 12 years (funded by the German Ministry of Family Affairs and various other institutions). In this project about 2,000 facilitators were trained to disseminate an empirically evaluated prevention programme on the promoting of child social skills and parenting skills on a nonprofit basis. Other recent projects of FL are “Evaluation of social therapy of sexual offenders” (funded by the Bavarian Ministry of Justice), “Families and imprisonment Research” (with Dr. Caroline Lanskey;  ESRC), “Protective factors against extremism and violent radicalization” (with Dr. Doris Bender; European Commission), and “Systematic review of evaluation of prevention programmes against radicalization (German Ministry of the Interior).

FL served in many national and international roles. For example, he was panel chair in the Violence Commission of the German Federal Government, chair of the Psychology and Law (P & L) Division of the German Psychological Association, secretary of the P & L Division of the International Association of Applied Psychology, member of the advisory boards of the German Criminological Centre, and the Max-Planck-Minerva Centre for Youth Problems (Israel). He was Faculty Dean at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, reporter to the Council of Europe, member of the Correctional Programmes Accreditation Panel of the Auditor General in Canada, chairman of the German accreditation committee for academic  programmes on P & L, chair of the Scientific Board of the Criminological Research Centre of Lower Saxony, chair of the Correctional Services Accreditation Panel of England and Wales, vice-chair of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Max-Planck-Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law, member or chair of various award committees of the American Society of Criminology, chair of the advisory group of the research consortium on sexual abuse in the German Catholic Church, and member of the Law & Criminology Expert Panel of the Belgian Research Foundation. He also was a member of the expert group on future policy making of the German Federal Chancellor and became speaker of the steering group of the proposed National Insttute on Crime Prevention in the Ministry of the Interior. He also serves on various other boards, e.g. on the Campbell Crime & Justice Coordinating Group, the Centre of Evidence-Based Crime Policy at George Mason University, the Jury of the Stockholm Prize in Criminology, the Netherlands Institute for the Study of Crime and Law Enforcement (NSCR), and the Criminological Service of the Bavarian Ministry of Justice. He is also an editorial board member of 15 national and international journals.

In recognition of his scientific work, FL has received various honours and awards. He was elected  President of the European Association of Psychology and Law (EAPL), President of the Criminological Society of the German-speaking Countries, Visiting Fellow of the British Psychological Society, and Fellow of the Academy of Experimental Criminology. He is a recipient of the Sellin-Glueck Award of the American Society of Criminology (ASC), the Jerry Lee Award of the ASC Division of Experimental Criminology, the German Psychology Prize, the EAPL Lifetime Achievement Award, an honorary Dr. sc. from Glasgow Caledonian University, honorary professorships of Universities at Chongqing and Hang Zhou (China), the Lifetime Achievement Award of the ASC Division of Developmental and Life-course Criminology, the Joan McCord Award of the Academy of Experimental Criminology, the Beccaria Gold Medal of the Criminological Society of the German-speaking Countries, and the Stockholm Prize in Criminology.


Professor Lösel's research interests are in the fields of criminology, clinical psychology, psychology and law, assessment, and programme evaluation. He has worked, for example, on juvenile delinquency, prisons and their alternatives, offender treatment, football hooliganism, school bullying, personality disordered offenders, resilience, close relationships, risk assessment for child abuse, and evaluation methodology. Since 1999, he has been conducting a combined prospective longitudinal and experimental study of 700 children and their families to investigate factors that either fuel or prevent the development of antisocial behaviour.


Emeritus Professor
Professor Friedrich  Lösel

Contact Details

+44 (0)1223 335385