Shea W. Cronin

Shea W. Cronin
Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice
PhD, American University; BS, Northeastern University

Dr. Cronin received his PhD in Justice, Law, and Society from American University, School of Public Affairs. His dissertation research examined political explanations of neighborhood-level arrest rates in an urban police agency. Cronin’s research interests include the administration of criminal justice, communities and crime, policing, and issues of democratic accountability. His research has been published in Crime and Delinquency, Justice Quarterly, and other academic journals. He teaches in the graduate and undergraduate criminal justice programs at MET, including courses in criminology, criminal justice, policing, communities and crime, and analytic methods. Before his appointment at Boston University, Cronin taught at the University of Massachusetts, Boston.


Hi, I’m Shea Cronin. I’m a professor of Criminal Justice at Boston University, and my main area of interest is in the administration of justice, and I specifically study police organizations, police strategies, and evaluate public policies and programs.

The ways in which our criminal justice system responds to crime raises very important questions about fairness and responsiveness. It’s important to me because I think that the stakes are very high around these kinds of issues, and you see that in the news almost every day, but particularly now.

There’s not a semester where we’re not talking about current events, that are really just emblematic of broader and deeper kinds of questions that we’ve seen throughout history in the policing field.

Early on in my graduate career I realized that teaching was something that was very important to me, that I really valued working with students. I get a lot out of working with students on a day to day basis, helping them to develop a set of skills to analyze and evaluate any kind of issue connected to the criminal justice system.


  • Criminology

Scholarly Works

Published ArticlesCronin, S., Farrell, A., and Pennington, L. “Juror Perceptions of the Legitimacy of Legal Authorities and Decision Making in Criminal Cases.” Law & Social Inquiry (accepted for publication 2013).

Kane, Robert J., and Shea Cronin. “Maintaining Order Under the Rule of Law: Occupational Templates and Police Use of Force.” Journal of Crime and Justice no. 3 (2011).

“Understanding the Temporal Dynamics of Police Organizational Responses to Crime.” Proc. Annual Meeting of American Society of Criminology (San Francisco, Calif., 2010).

Cronin, S., and A. Farrell. “Innovation in Law Enforcement Responses to ‘New Crimes’: The Case of Human Trafficking.” Proc. Annual Meeting of American Society of Criminology (San Francisco, Calif., 2010).

Kane, Robert J., and Shea Cronin. “Associations between Order-Maintenance Policing and Violent Crime: Considering the Mediating Effects of Residential Context.” Crime & Delinquency (2009).

Braga, Anthony, Glen Pierce, Jack McDevitt, Brenda Bond, and Shea Cronin. “The Strategic Prevention of Gang Violence Among Gang-Involved Offenders.” Justice Quarterly 15, no. 1 (2008): 132.

Gueorguieva, Vassia, Jean Accius, Carmen Apaza, Lamar Bennett, Shea Cronin, and Panote Preechyanud. “The Program Assessment Rating Tool and the Government Performance and Results Act: Evaluating Conflicts and Disconnections.” The American Review of Public Administration 39 (2009): 225-245. Originally published online June 2008 as doi: 10.1177/0275074008319218.

Cronin, Shea, Jack McDevitt, Amy Farrell, and Jim Nolan. “Bias Crime Reporting: Organizational Responses to Ambiguity, Uncertainty, and Infrequency.” American Behavioral Scientist 51, no. 2 (2007): 213-231.

Nolan, Jim, Shea Cronin, Jack McDevitt, and Amy Farrell. “Learning to See Hate Crimes: A Framework for Understanding and Clarifying Ambiguities in Bias Crime Classification.” The Justice Professional 17, no. 1 (2004): 91-105.


“Using 3-1-1 Calls to Examine Neighborhood-Level Explanations of Social Control.” Annual Conference of the American Society of Criminology, Washington, D.C., November 16–19, 2011. Co-presented with Moreau, J.

“Roundtable Discussant: Police Use of Force: Various Perspectives from a Special Issue of the Journal of Crime & Justice.” Annual Conference of the American Society of Criminology, Washington, D.C., November 16–19, 2011.

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