Faculty Directory

Dr. Elizabeth K. Brown

Dr. Elizabeth K. Brown

Assistant Professor

Office Location:
Timon 101


Dr. Brown grew up overseas (Africa, Asia) and graduated from high school in Amherst, MA. She graduated summa cum laude from Tufts University with a B.A. in Psychology in 2000. She went on to earn a Ph.D. in Criminal Justice from the School of Criminal Justice, University at Albany in the spring of 2009. She was happy to join the excellent faculty at Niagara University in the fall of 2009.

Focus of Teaching

In the spring 2014 semester, Dr. Brown is teaching "Comparative Crime and Justice" (graduate) and "Policy Paper" (graduate). She has previously taught "Corrections," "Politics of Punishment," "Comparative Criminal Justice Systems," and "American Criminal Courts."

Current Research

Dr. Brown will be a Visiting Scholar at the Robina Institute of Criminal Law and Criminal Justice at the University of Minnesota Law School in 2013-2014. Her research focuses on the contexts and dynamics of punishment policy and policymaking, social and political constructions of crime, the legitimacy of penal policy, state-level punishment practices, public defense systems, the politicization of crime control, and the roles of public opinion in penal policymaking:

Worden, Alissa P., Davies, Andrew L. B., Brown, Elizabeth, K. (2014) “Public Defense in an Age of Innocence: The Innocence Paradigm and the Challenges of Representing the Accused,” pages 209-225 in Wrongful Conviction & Criminal Justice Reform: Making Justice, edited by Marvin Zalman and Julia Carrano, New York, NY: Routledge Press.

Brown, Elizabeth K. (2013). "Foreclosing on incarceration? State correctional policy enactments and the Great Recession." Criminal Justice Policy Review 24(3): 317-337.

Brown, Elizabeth K. (2012). "Rethinking public opinion in penal policymaking: Recommendations for research." Sociology Compass, 6(8): 601-613.

Brown, Elizabeth K. (2011). “Constructing the public will: How political actors in New York State construct, assess, and use public opinion in penal policy making.” Punishment & Society, 13(4): 424-450.

Alissa Pollitz Worden, Andrew Lucas Davies & Elizabeth K. Brown. (2011) "A Patchwork of Policies: Justice, due process, and public defense across American states" 74 Alb. L. Rev. 1423.

Brown, Elizabeth K. (2009). Public Opinion and Penal Policymaking: An Examination of Constructions, Assessments, and Uses of Public Opinion by Political Actors in New York State. Ph.D. Dissertation, School of Criminal Justice, University at Albany.

Brown, Elizabeth K. (2006). “The dog that did not bark: Punitive social views and the professional middle classes.” Punishment & Society, 8 (3): 287-312.

Acker, James R., Brown, Elizabeth K., & Englebrecht, Christine M. (2004; reprinted 2007). “The Scottsboro Boys’ Trials: Black Men as ‘Racial Scapegoats.’” In F. Bailey & S. Chermak (Eds.), Famous American Crimes and Trials: Vol. 4. Crime, Media, and Popular Culture. Westport, CT: Praeger Publishing, 147-168.

Current Involvement

Dr. Brown is a member of the American Society of Criminology (ASC) and the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS), and reviews manuscripts for Justice Quarterly, Theoretical Criminology, Social Problems, Criminal Justice Policy Review, and Criminal Justice Review. She serves on the Niagara University Fulbright committee, the College of Arts & Sciences Curriculum Committee, Niagara University's Institutional Review Board (IRB), and at the Heart, Love and Soul soup kitchen in Niagara Falls.