Erin M. Kerrison


Assistant Professor Erin M. Kerrison's work extends from a legal epidemiological framework, wherein law and legal institutions operate as structural determinants of health. Specifically, through varied agency partnerships, her mixed-method research agenda investigates the impact that compounded structural disadvantage, concentrated poverty and state supervision has on service delivery, substance misuse, violence and other health outcomes for individuals and communities marked by criminal justice intervention.

Dr. Kerrison's research has been supported by the National Institute of Justice and the National Institute on Drug Abuse and her recent empirical research has been published in Health Services ResearchPunishment & Society, Law and Human Behavior, and Social Science & Medicine.  Dr. Kerrison holds a BA in Sociology and Philosophy from Haverford College, an MA in Criminology, Law and Society from Villanova University, and a PhD in Criminology from the University of Delaware. She was also awarded a Vice Provost's Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Pennsylvania and serves as an active member of the American Society of Criminology, the Law & Society Association, and the Society for Social Work and Research.

Publication List


SW 260: Forensic Social Welfare

SW 280: Introduction to Social Welfare Research

SW 282A: Seminar in Social Welfare Research - Data Science for Social Good

SW 298: Legal Epidemiology

I am not currently in a position to sponsor any visiting scholars or fellows from overseas at this time.

Honors and Awards

Graduate Assembly Faculty Mentor Award (2020)

In The News

Expanded Publications

Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles

Cobbina, J. E., Kerrison, E., & Bender, K. (2020). The Baltimore moment: Race, place, and public disorderJournal of Crime and Justice, 42(2), 161-173.

Kerrison, E. M. & Sewell, A. A. (2020) "Negative Illness Feedbacks: High-Frisk Policing Reduces Civilian Reliance on ED Services." Health Services Research, 55(S2), 787-796.

Bachman, R., Rodriguez, S., Kerrison, E. M., & Leon, C. (2019). The recursive relationship between substance abuse, prostitution, and incarceration: Voices from a long-term cohort of women. Victims & Offenders, 14(5), 587–605.

Bandes, S. A., Pryor, M., Kerrison, E. M., & Goff, P. A. (2019). The mismeasure of Terry stops: Assessing the psychological and emotional harms of stop and frisk to individuals and communitiesBehavioral Sciences and the Law, ;37, 176–194.

Del Toro, J., Lloyd, T., Buchanan, K. S., Robins, S. J., Bencharit, L. Z., Smiedt, M. G., Reddy, K. S., Pouget, E. R. Kerrison, E. M., Goff, P. A. (2019). The criminogenic  effects of police stops on adolescent black and Latino boysProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences116(17), 8261–8268.

Kerrison, E. M., Goff, P. A., Burbank, C., & Hyatt, J. M. (2019). On creating ethical, productive, and durable action research partnerships with police officers and their departments: A case study of the National Justice Database. Police Practice and Research: An International Journal, 20(6), 567–584.

Trinkner, R., Kerrison, E. M., & Goff, P. A. (2019). The force of fear: Police stereotype threat, self- legitimacy, and support for excessive force. Law and Human Behavior, 43(5), 421–435.

Kerrison, E. M. (2018). Risky business, risk assessment, and other heteronormative misnomers in women’s community corrections and reentry planningPunishment & Society20(1), 134–151.

Kerrison, E. M., Cobbina, J., & Bender, K. (2018). “Your pants won’t save you”: Why black youth challenge race-based police surveillance and the demands of black respectability politicsRace and Justice8(1), 7–26. *Lead Article for Special Issue: “Youth and Policing”

Kerrison, E. M. (2017). An historical review of racial bias in prison-based substance abuse treatment designJournal of Offender Rehabilitation56(8), 567–592.

Kerrison, E. M. (2018). Exploring how prison-based drug rehabilitation programming shapes racial disparities in substance use disorder recoverySocial Science & Medicine199, 140–147.

Bachman, R., Kerrison, E. M., Paternoster, R., Smith, L., & Connell, D. O. (2016). The complex relationship between motherhood and desistanceWomen and Criminal Justice26(3), 212–231.

Bachman, R., Kerrison, E., Paternoster, R., O’Connell, D., & Smith, L. (2016). Desistance for a long-term drug involved sample of adult offenders: The importance of identity transformationCriminal Justice and Behavior43(2), 164–186.

Kerrison, E. M., Bachman, R., & Paternoster, R. (2016). The effects of age at prison release on women’s desistance trajectories: A mixed-method analysisJournal of Developmental and Life-Course Criminology2(3), 341–370.

Paternoster, R., Bachman, R., Kerrison, E., O’Connell, D., & Smith, L. (2016). Desistance from crime and identity: An empirical test with survival timeCriminal Justice and Behavior43(9), 1204–1224.

Kerrison, E. M. (2015). White claims to illness and the race-based medicalization of addiction for drug-involved former prisonersHarvard Journal on Racial and Ethnic Justice31, 105–128.

Paternoster, R., Bachman, R., Bushway, S., Kerrison, E., & O’Connell, D. (2015). Human agency and explanations of criminal desistance: Arguments for a rational choice theoryJournal of Developmental and Life Course Criminology1(3), 209–235.

Chapters in Edited Volumes

Bachman, R., Rodriguez, S.,* Kerrison, E. M., & Leon, C. (2021). "The Recursive Relationship between Substance Abuse, Prostitution, and Incarceration: Voices from a Long-term Cohort of Women." In A. Horning (Ed.), Quitting the Sex Trade: Why and How Pimps and Sex Workers Leave the Business (pp 55-73). New York: Routledge.

Kerrison, E. M. “Meditation Programs” (2017). In K. R. Kerley, H. Copes, S. De Li, & S. F. Sharp (Eds.), The Encyclopedia of Corrections. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley-Blackwell

Kerrison, E. M., & Bachman, R. (2016). Second-chance grandparenting: How a new and renewed identity impacts the desistance process. In S. F. Sharp, S. Marcus-Mendoza, K. A. Cameron, & E. S. Daniel-Roberson (Eds.), Across the Spectrum of Women and Crime: Theories, Offending, and the Criminal Justice System (pp. 225–242). Durham, NC: Carolina Academic Press.

Kerrison, E. M., Bachman, R., & Alvarez, A. (2015). The societal causes of violence. In P. T. Clements, S. Seedat, & E. N. Gibbings (Eds.), Mental Health Issues of Child Maltreatment (pp. 123–150). St. Louis, MO: STM Learning, Inc.

Research Reports

Owens, E., Kerrison, E. M., & Santos Da Silveira, B. (2017). Examining racial disparities in criminal case outcomes among indigent defendants in San Francisco. Quattrone Center for the Fair Administration of Justice, University of Pennsylvania Law School.

Bachman, R., Kerrison, E., O’Connell, D., & Paternoster, R. (2013). Roads diverge: Long-term patterns of relapse, recidivism and desistance for a cohort of drug-involved offenders (Grant Number 2008-IJ-CX-1107). Washington, DC: National Institute of Justice, United States Department of Justice.

Book Reviews

Kerrison, E. M. (2016). Living with Lynching: African American Lynching Plays, Performance, and Citizenship, 1890-1930 by Koritha Mitchell. Spectrum: A Journal on Black Men, 4(2), 101-103.

Kerrison, E. M. (2015). Chained in Silence: Black Women and Convict Labor in the New South by Talitha L. LeFlouria. Punishment & Society, 17(4), 535-537.

Research interests: 
  • Behavioral Health and Prevention/Intervention
  • Community, Organizational and Policy Development
  • Health and Healthcare Disparities
  • Race/Class/Gender
  • Criminal Justice Organization and Policy
  • Legal Consciousness Among Underserved Community Members
  • Legal Epidemiology
  • Privatization of Healthcare and Supervision in Underserved Communities
  • Risk/Needs Assessments
  • Substance Abuse Treatment Modalities
  • Trauma and Crime


Haviland Hall 202