Kevin Wozniak



Riverstown House
Ground Floor


Kevin H. Wozniak joined the School of Law and Criminology after working as a member of the sociology faculty at the University of Massachusetts Boston in the United States for nine and a half years.  Kevin studies the politics of crime and criminal justice, broadly construed.  He has published widely on American public opinion about criminal justice and its interaction with wider political forces in the country.  His research appears in a variety of American and international journals, such as Criminology, Justice Quarterly, Punishment & Society, Law & Society Review, Criminology & Public Policy, Criminal Justice Policy Review, and Social Problems.  With Joanne Savage, he is the co-author of Thugs and Thieves: The Differential Etiology of Violence, published by Oxford University Press, and the author of The Politics of Crime Prevention: Race, Public Opinion, and the Meaning of Community Safety, published by New York University Press.

Prior to joining UMass Boston, Kevin was a Congressional Fellow of the American Political Science Association.  During his fellowship, he worked as a legislative aide for Representative Bobby Scott of Virginia in the U.S. House of Representatives.  His portfolio in Congressman Scott's office included juvenile justice reform, gun control, and primary and secondary education policy.  Kevin is also a former W.E.B. DuBois Fellow of the U.S. National Institute of Justice.

Kevin received his BA degree in psychology from Skidmore College in New York State and his MA and Ph.D. degrees in justice, law, and society and American politics from American University in Washington, D.C.

Now that he has joined Maynooth, Kevin is eager to conduct comparative research and explore the similarities and differences in Irish and U.S. history, culture, politics, and criminal justice practices.  He welcomes collaborators who share that interest.

Research Interests

  • The politics of crime and criminal justice
  • Public opinion and public punitiveness
  • Criminal justice policymaking
  • United States politics, policy, and criminal justice
  • Racism and prejudice
  • Survey experiments


Year Publication
2023 Wozniak, K.H. (2023) The Politics of Crime Prevention: Race, Public Opinion, and the Meaning of Community Safety. New York: New York University Press. [Link]
2016 Savage, J. and Wozniak, K.H. (2016) Thugs and Thieves: The Differential Etiology of Violence. New York: Oxford University Press. [Link]

Book Chapter

Year Publication
2020 Wozniak, K.H., Drakulich, K.M. and Calfano, B.R. (2020) 'Theories of Public Opinion Change Versus Stability and their Implications for Null Findings' In: Understanding Survey Methodology. Switzerland : Springer. [Link]

Peer Reviewed Journal

Year Publication
2022 Wozniak K.H.; Pickett J.T.; Brown E.K. (2022) 'Judging Hardworking Robbers and Lazy Thieves: An Experimental Test of Act- vs. Person-Centered Punitiveness and Perceived Redeemability'. Justice Quarterly, 39 (7):1565-1591. [DOI]
2022 Pickett J.T.; Ivanov S.; Wozniak K.H. (2022) 'Selling effective violence prevention policies to the public: a nationally representative framing experiment'. Journal of Experimental Criminology, 18 (2):387-409. [DOI]
2021 Johnston, T; Wozniak, KH (2021) 'Public opinion and the politics of collateral consequence policies'. Punishment and Society, 23 :190-217. [DOI]
2021 Wozniak K.H.; Drakulich K.M.; Calfano B.R. (2021) 'Do photos of police-civilian interactions influence public opinion about the police? A multimethod test of media effects'. Journal of Experimental Criminology, 17 (2). [DOI]
2021 Johnston T.M.; Wozniak K.H. (2021) 'Framing Effects and Group Differences in Public Opinion about Prison Pell Grants'. PS - Political Science and Politics, 54 (3):411-415. [DOI]
2021 Drakulich K.; Wozniak K.H.; Hagan J.; Johnson D. (2021) 'Whose lives mattered? How White and Black Americans felt about Black Lives Matter in 2016'. Law and Society Review, 55 (2):227-251. [DOI]
2021 Wozniak K.H.; Drakulich K.M.; Calfano B.R. (2021) 'Public Opinion About Police Weapons and Equipment: An Exploratory Analysis'. Criminal Justice Policy Review, 32 (9):960-991. [DOI]
2020 Wozniak K.H. (2020) 'The Effect of Exposure to Racialized Cues on White and Black Public Support for Justice Reinvestment'. Justice Quarterly, 37 (6):1067-1095. [DOI]
2020 Drakulich K.; Wozniak K.H.; Hagan J.; Johnson D. (2020) 'Race and policing in the 2016 presidential election: Black lives matter, the police, and dog whistle politics'. Criminology, 58 (2):370-402. [DOI]
2020 Wozniak K.H. (2020) 'An Analysis of Black–White Racial Differences in Public Support for Nonviolent Sentencing Reform'. Race And Justice, 10 (4):456-479. [DOI]
2019 Savage J.; Ellis S.K.; Wozniak K.H. (2019) 'The Role of Poverty and Income in the Differential Etiology of Violence: An Empirical Test'. Journal of Poverty, 23 (5):384-403. [DOI]
2019 Creighton M.J.; Wozniak K.H. (2019) 'Are racial and educational inequities in mass incarceration perceived to be a social problem? Results from an experiment'. Social Problems, 66 (4):485-502. [DOI]
2019 Wozniak K.H.; Calfano B.R.; Drakulich K.M. (2019) 'A “Ferguson Effect” on 2016 Presidential Vote Preference? Findings from a Framing Experiment Examining “Shy Voters” and Cues Related to Policing and Social Unrest*'. Social Science Quarterly, 100 (4):1023-1038. [DOI]
2017 Wozniak K. (2017) 'Public Opinion About Gun Control Post–Sandy Hook'. Criminal Justice Policy Review, 28 (3):255-278. [DOI]
2017 Wozniak K. (2017) 'The relationship between perceptions of prison and support for the death penalty versus life without parole'. Journal of Crime and Justice, 40 (2):222-237. [DOI]
2017 Drakulich K.; Hagan J.; Johnson D.; Wozniak K. (2017) 'Race, justice, policing, and the 2016 American presidential election'. Du Bois Review: Social Science Research on Race, 14 (1):7-33. [DOI]
2016 Wozniak K.H. (2016) 'Ontological Insecurity, Racial Tension, and Confidence in the Police in the Shadow of Urban Unrest'. Sociological Forum, 31 (4):1063-1082. [DOI]
2016 Wozniak K.H. (2016) 'Perceptions of Prison and Punitive Attitudes: A Test of the Penal Escalation Hypothesis'. Criminal Justice Review, 41 (3):352-371. [DOI]
2016 Wozniak K. (2016) 'Public Opinion and the Politics of Criminal Justice Policy Making: Reasons for Optimism, Pessimism, and Uncertainty'. Criminology & Public Policy, 15 (1):179-186. [DOI]
2014 Wozniak K. (2014) 'A political science assessment of the house democratic gun violence prevention task force'. PS - Political Science and Politics, 47 (2):550-552. [DOI]
2014 Wozniak K. (2014) 'American Public Opinion About Prisons'. Criminal Justice Review, 39 (3):305-324. [DOI]
2010 Wozniak K.; Lewis A. (2010) 'Reexamining the effect of christian denominational affiliation on death penalty support'. Journal of Criminal Justice, 38 (5):1082-1089. [DOI]

Book Review

Year Publication
2017 Kevin H. Wozniak (2017) Peter K. Enns. Incarceration Nation: How the United States Became the Most Punitive Democracy in the World. New York: Cambridge University Press. 2016. 192 pp. $24.99 (paper). [Book Review] [Link] [DOI]

Encyclopedia Entry

Year Publication
2013 Lisa L. Miller; Kevin H. Wozniak (2013) Criminology and Political Science. [Encyclopedia Entry] [DOI]
2010 Kevin H. Wozniak (2010) Krivo, Lauren J. and Ruth D. Peterson: Extreme disadvantage and crime. [Encyclopedia Entry]
Certain data included herein are derived from the © Web of Science (2024) of Clarivate. All rights reserved.

Professional Associations

Description Function From / To
American Society of Criminology A professional society of American academics who study crime and criminal justice. -
Law & Society Association A professional society of academics who study the interrelationship between law, legal institutions, culture, and society. -

Honors and Awards

Date Title Awarding Body
01/01/2015 W.E.B. DuBois Fellowship U.S. National Institute of Justice
01/01/2012 Congressional Fellow American Political Science Association


Committee Function From / To
Criminology Committee To oversee the criminology curriculum in the School of Law & Criminology 16/01/2023 -
Research Committee Oversees research-related matters in the School of Law & Criminology 25/09/2023 -
Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion Committee To advance equity, diversity, and inclusion initiatives within the School of Law & Criminology 01/02/2023 -


Employer Position From / To
Maynooth University Lecturer in Criminology 16/01/2023 -
University of Massachusetts Boston Assistant/Associate Professor of Sociology 01/09/2013 - 31/12/2022


Start date Institution Qualification Subject
American University Ph.D. Justice, Law, & Society
Skidmore College BA psychology


Client Description
Expert Panel, Office of the Inspector of Prisons

Teaching Interests

Criminological Theory; Theories of Punishment; Criminal Justice Policy and Practice; U.S. Criminal Justice; Survey Research Methods and Survey Experiments; Mixed Methods Research