Beatriz Magaloni, a senior fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies (FSI), is the recipient of the prestigious Stockholm Prize in Criminology. The prize recognizes outstanding achievements in criminological research by practitioners for the reduction of crime and the advancement of human rights.
The announcement, published Tuesday, Oct. 18, recognized Magaloni’s research for providing important evidence that police organizations are vulnerable to populist demands for harsh police methods that violate the rule of law – and which, in the long run, do not reduce, but increase, violence in society.
“Her extensive research in Mexico and Brazil shows how public support for police militarization can challenge human rights without increasing public safety,” stated the announcement. “Her work clearly demonstrates the complexity of policing and reminds us of the many dangers of simple solutions to complex problems.”
Magaloni is the Graham H. Stuart Professor of International Relations and a professor of political science in the School of Humanities and Sciences. A native of Mexico, Magaloni has a law degree from the Instituto Autónomo de México, ITAM. She received her Ph.D. in political science from Duke University. She has been teaching at Stanford University since 1999.
At FSI, Magaloni is an affiliate of the Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law and Center for International Security and Cooperation.
“I am elated that Beatriz has been honored with this prestigious award and that her work to find solutions to lawlessness and violence is being recognized on the world stage," said Kathryn Stoner, the Mosbacher Director of the Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law. "Today and every day I am proud to call her my friend and colleague.”
Magaloni’s research focuses on issues of violence, human rights and poverty reduction. The Poverty, Violence, and Governance Lab (POVGOV), which she founded in 2010, aims to develop action-oriented research that is anchored on state-of-the-art methodologies, multidisciplinary work, and innovative on-the-ground research and training. The lab regularly enlists graduate and undergraduate students, as well as postdoctoral scholars, to pilot and evaluate interventions to reduce violence, combat human rights abuses and improve the accountability of law enforcement and justice systems.
“I feel so grateful for this award, and very humbled,” said Magaloni. “If you look at the list of scholars who have preceded me, it is all those who have made the field of criminology what it is today. I am standing on the shoulders of giants.”
The international award, equivalent to the Nobel in criminology, has highlighted the contributions of the most prominent lawyers, sociologists, psychologists, economists, and criminologists in the field, including the late professor Joan Petersilia at the Stanford Law School.
“Beatriz Magaloni’s work on violence, policing, poverty and human rights addresses important issues that are central to the rule of law,” said Jenny S. Martinez, the Richard E. Lang Professor of Law and dean of Stanford Law School. “It’s so wonderful to see her receive this significant honor marking her as one of the leading scholars in the world on these issues.”
The jury for the award is composed of both academics and practitioners. Jury members select nominations made by any three individual criminologists, any society of criminology and/or any other organization applying or producing criminology.
Under the aegis of the Swedish Ministry of Justice, the prize sum is 1,000,000 SEK, funded permanently by the Swedish Ministry of Justice, the Torsten Söderberg Foundation, the Jerry Lee Foundation, and the Hitachi Mirai Foundation. The award ceremony will take place at the Stockholm City Hall during the international Stockholm Criminology Symposium, June 12-14, 2023.
“I am thrilled to see that the rest of the world is recognizing what we at Stanford have known for decades about the incredible impact of Beatriz’s work,” said Michael McFaul, director of the Freeman Spogli Institute. “I am so happy for her!”