Personal profile

Research interests


Fiona Brookman is Professor of Criminology at the University of South Wales, UK.  She obtained her MSc and PhD from Cardiff University.  She worked alongside Professor Trevor Bennett to establish the Centre for Criminology in 2001.  Fiona led the Criminology subject area at USW for a decade prior to the esablishment of the Centre, and was Director of the Centre between 2015-2021.

She has over 24 years' of experience in teaching and research in the fields of policing, violence and homicide.  Using mainly qualitative research methods, her research focuses on the dynamics and causes of homicide and violence, violence prevention and the investigation of homicide.  She has extensive experience of conducting in-depth interviews with violent offenders and of interviewing and shadowing homicide detectives and forensic scientists (in Britain and America).  Her research is helping to enhance police practice and directly informing violence reduction initiatives.  She led a Leverhulme-funded project exploring the role of forensic science and technology in homicide investigation.  She has also undertaken a number of evaluations and evidence assessment projects on behalf of the Home Office, Ministry of Justice and Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Service on topics such as serious crime and police corruption in Trinidad and Tobago, reducing and preventing homicide in the UK and the impacts of using forensic science in the investigation of homicide.

Fiona is Director of the Criminal Investigation Research Network (CIRN) and a member of a Home Office Expert Advisory Panel on Serious Violence Policy.  

Fiona has over 80 peer review publications including those in international journals as well as numerous chapters in edited collections, including The Oxford Handbook of Offender Decision Making (Oxford: 2017), the Oxford Handbook of Criminology (Oxford: 2012), In Their Own Words (Oxford: 2013), Narrative Criminology (New York: 2015) and The Handbook of Qualitative Criminology (Routledge: 2015). She is lead editor of the Handbook of Homicide (Wiley: 2017) and author of Understanding Homicide (Sage: 2022) (2nd edition).   

Teaching and Doctoral Supervision

Fiona designed and delivers modules on the Criminology degree programme, including 'Understanding Homicide' at Undergraduate level and 'Violence and Homicide' at Masters level.  She has supervised nine PhD students to successful completion (on topics such as gangs and violence, drug use and offending, domestic homicide reviews and public order policing).  She currently supervises six PhD students on topics that include: the sensemaking role of CSIs at suspicious crime scenes, the role of digital forensics in homicide investigation, missing persons investigations, domestic violence victim support services in Wales and the declining charge rate in homicide offences in England and Wales.   

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

External positions

Editorial Board Member of the American Journal of Criminal Justice (2017 to date)

Member of the Home Office Impact of Forensics Project (2020 to date)

Member of the National CCTV Working Group (2020 to date)

Member of the National Police Chiefs’ Council Transforming (Digital) Forensics Research Working Group (2019 to date)

Chair of the Criminal Investigation Research Network (CIRN) (2011 to date)

Visiting Professor, American University, Washington DC (2011)

Expert Advisor to Home Office Crime and Policing Group (2011 to date)

Member of the Society of Evidence Based Policing (SEBP)

Member of the Narrative Criminology Nordic Research Network (2011 to date)

Editorial Board Member of the International Criminal Justice Review (2011 to date)


  • H Social Sciences (General)
  • Homicide
  • Violence
  • Ethnography
  • Major Crime Investigation
  • Policing
  • Narrative Criminology
  • Drugs and Violent Crime


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