CALL FOR PAPERS: Race and Criminal/Community Justice

Published 06/05/2021
Type Rapid Communication
Author(s) Kevin Wong
Corresponding Authors

A British Journal of Community Justice special issue

What explains the persistence of ethnic and racial disparities within the criminal justice system in the UK and other jurisdictions and how should they be addressed? Whilst there is far reaching agreement that such disparities exist and need to be eliminated or mitigated, the explanations for these differential outcomes are more contested.

We are inviting papers from practitioners, policy makers and researchers to address these questions and the wider aspects of race and the criminal justice system more generally.
This invitation comes at a pivotal moment in the UK’s race debate. Recent events such as the Black Lives Matter protests in the United States, the United Kingdom (and other countries), the Windrush scandal (in the UK) or the high death rates from Covid-19 of Black, Asian and other minority ethnic (BAME) people has brought the issue of racial and ethnic disparities into sharp relief.
In the UK, the publication of the controversial Sewell Commission report into racial and ethnic disparities in Britain has added further intensity to this debate.

This begs the question as to whether the situation really has changed over the last four decades or not?

40 years ago the Scarman report into the Brixton race riots pointed to “complex political, social and economic factors” in relation to racial disadvantage and concluded that “all the evidence I have received suggests that racialism and discrimination against black people – often hidden, sometimes unconscious – remain a major source of social tension and conflict” .
In 1999, following the racist murder of Stephen Lawrence and the botched Metropolitan police investigation, the Macpherson report attributed these failings to ‘institutional racism’, a label which inaugurated wide-ranging reform within British policing.

This special issue of the British Journal of Community Justice aims to examine current and future developments in race and criminal, social or community justice.
Our journal is policy and practitioner as well as researcher focused, so writing should be aimed at this wider audience. We call for abstracts or outlines of papers from prospective contributors that address the issues highlighted above – in the UK and/or in other jurisdictions.
Please send abstracts or outlines of up to 200 words to us at Alternatively, get in touch if there is an idea you would like to discuss.

Our timetable for publishing this special issue is:
Deadline for abstracts and expressions of interest in writing for the special issue: 23rd July 2021
Deadline for submissions – 30th October 2021
Publication – March 2022

Our journal’s editorial board look forward with interest to receiving your submissions.
If you would like to submit a paper or discuss an idea for a paper please contact us at

Please note that papers should be no longer than 7,000 words (including references but excluding the abstract).