A Research Guide
International Criminal Justice is a relatively new field of study at John Jay College. It includes components from such academic disciplines as politics and economics, sociology and anthropology, computer and information science, law and public administration, gender studies and linguistics, and many others. The multidisciplinary nature of the field makes it difficult to provide the researcher with a definitive list of resources.
This research guide focuses on resources that are helpful for courses in the International Criminal Justice major at John Jay College. The guide provides students with effective search strategies to locate different types of information using the library catalog, electronic information databases, and the Internet. The guide has the following structure:
I. Introduction to International Criminal Justice
International Criminal Justice research encompasses criminal justice issues going beyond the local or national level. It looks at various crimes and criminal justice responses to them from a global perspective. The area of studies in International Criminal Justice can be broken down but is not limited to the following set of topics.
police cooperation and other international agencies in enforcing ideas and principles of international criminal justice.
For further discussion about the nature of transnational and international crimes see Transnational Crime: Definitions and Concepts and introductory chapter in Handbook of Transnational Crime & Justice.
As stated above, International Criminal Justice is a complex discipline and information for the research topics can be found in any possible format - books, magazine and journal articles, in documents that are available over the Internet, etc. Where to look for information will depend on the nature of the research question and, most of all, the timeliness of the topic and its notoriety.
Time has to pass before an issue can be treated in a book. Sometimes an issue is so narrow that it will only be mentioned in a chapter of a book. Information on developing issues will be available in the form of newspaper articles, and news releases on the TV or radio, over newswires, and on the Web. Articles in popular magazines start to appear earlier than publications in scholarly journals. Proceedings of conferences and documents produced by international organizations are very good sources of information but might also be published with some delay. Early developments and overviews of a topic can be presented in general and specialized encyclopedias, handbooks, and even textbooks in related fields.
The language of a publication is an important issue. Foreign language books are not readily available in our library. If you are proficient in a foreign language, you should be able to find interesting materials online and then make your own translation.
Considerations to take into account about possible sources of information:
One of the most challenging aspects of every research project is the ability to formulate the topic and then describe it in simple terms, especially when gathering information using the computer. The selection of search terms, or keywords, as well as the way they are presented to the online system can either advance or obstruct the search.
You will be using keywords when looking for books in the library online catalog CUNY+, when searching for articles in the electronic information databases (i.e. library databases), or when browsing the Internet.
Your keyword might be a simple significant word (such as terrorism) or a phrase (transnational crime, for example). Keywords can be used in various combinations to limit, narrow or expand your search depending on the amount of the information retrieved.
Avoid using articles, prepositions, verbs, long phrases or questions; concentrate on significant terms that express your topic best and always keep a list of possible search terms.
Examples of keyword searches to brainstorm very broad topics:
Comparative criminal justice
Adding another term will narrow down your topic and provide you with a more targeted list of documents. Note that distinctive concepts are combined with the operator AND. Some Internet search engines use ‘+’ sign for this purpose (go through the Help page of the search engine to learn about the specifics of its search function).
Terrorism and civil rights
Money laundering and Asia
Drug trafficking and Colombia
Genocide and Armenia
Crime prevention and Great Britain
Prisons and England and rehabilitation
Police and India and women
Prostitution and crime
Cross-cultural studies and law
Finding resources appropriate for your topic may require some experimenting with the search terms. Explore search screens and Help pages for each database or Internet search engine you are using. You will find that in addition to Basic search screen the majority of computer systems will have options for Advanced or Guided searches where you will have more flexibility for keyword combinations. Be cautious and do not put too many keywords into the search boxes.
As a rule, Advanced and Guided search screens have boxes for keywords and drop-down boxes for different operators so the keywords could be put together in various combinations. Alternate terms, or synonyms, for a keyword are put together in one box joined by the operator OR and then added to another keyword with the operator AND.
Remember that spelling of some English words is different in various countries. For example, GLOBALIZATION might be spelled GLOBALISATION, LABOR can be spelled LABOUR, BAHAVIOR is spelled BEHAVIOUR in Britain, LAWYER is SOLICITOR in England, etc. The word MAFIA is sometimes spelled MAFIYA if the subject is an organized crime group in Russia to distinguish it from such a group in Italy, expression DRUG TRAFFICKING can be shortened to DRUG TRAFFIC.
Many databases allow you to use truncation to allow for variation in the spelling or expansion of the word. The majority of the online systems uses * as a truncation symbol but sometimes it might be ! or ? or another sign. Always consult the Help pages of a database. Here are some examples:
globali*ation (for both globalization and globalisation)
global* (for globalization, globalization, globalized, etc.)
labo*r (for both labor and labour)
traffic* (for traffic and trafficking as well as trafficker or traffickers)
II. Locating sources of information
is accessible from the library’s home page.
CUNY+ is the electronic catalog for materials available in the libraries of the City University of New York. You can make a selection to search either the holdings of John Jay College library only or search all CUNY libraries. (More help on searching CUNY+ is available at http://www.lib.jjay.cuny.edu/help/cunyplushelp.html or by clicking on the HELP button on the basic search screen of the catalog.)
You can search the catalog by KEYWORDS when exploring a topic or you can search for a specific author or title. Use the choices in the drop-down menu..
Simple KEYWORD searches are performed on the basic search screen. The guided search screen allows for more sophisticated keyword searches.
For possible examples of keyword searches see the section called Determining search terms, or keywords above.
In CUNY + you can only verify if the library carries a particular title of a journal. The library catalog is not the right place to search by subject for magazine or journal articles. Consult the section below Finding articles on your topic to learn how to search for individual articles.
Some books in the collection of John Jay College library are available in the electronic format. While in CUNY + , click on the TITLE of the book to get to the URL link which will bring you to the electronic version of the book. You will be able to read the whole book online and print out some portions of the book but not the whole volume.
It is practically impossible to list all the books available in the library that can be used for the research assignments in the International Criminal Justice. Here is a very short list of some titles that can be referred to when looking for background information. Most are shelved in the Reference Collection on the 2nd floor.
Reichel, P. (Ed.) (2004). Handbook of transnational crime and justice. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
REFRENCE HV 6252.H 36 2005
The handbook is arranged as a mini-encyclopedia on transnational crime and justice . Authors represent ten different countries and provide practical and applied information on each topic. The book has 24 chapters distributed over four parts. The introduction presents the topic of transnational crime and puts it into the concept of justice. Part II gives examples of specific transnational crimes (terrorism, drug trafficking, money laundering, etc.). Part III covers cross-national and international efforts to combat transnational crime. The last part is devoted mostly to organized crime in different parts of the world – Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin and North America. All chapters have extensive references.
Dressler, J. (Ed.). (2nd ed.). (2002). Encyclopedia of Crime and Justice. New York: Macmillan.
REFERENCE HV6017 .E52 2002
This four-volume set includes articles about comparative criminal law and enforcement for China, England and Wales, Islam, Russia, and also preliterate societies. Also discussed are: crime in developing countries, international criminal law and enforcement, and several international criminal courts and other organizations.
Kritzer, H. (Ed.). (2002). Legal systems of the world: a political, social, and cultural encyclopedia. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO.
REFERENCE LAW K48.L44 2002
This four-volume encyclopedia includes profiles of many countries and the 50 states of the United States. The profiles include information about the country’s history, political structure, the court system and generally accepted legal concepts. Most profiles also include details about the staffing and administration of the courts, and the impact of the law upon society. International courts and international legal organizations are profiled and numerous topics of concern such as juries, plea bargaining, and rehabilitation are discussed, with comparisons made among selected countries.
Levinson, D. (Ed.). (2002). Encyclopedia of Crime and Punishment. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
REFERENCE HV 6017.E524 2002
This four-volume encyclopedia includes discussions of topics such as comparative law and justice, comparative policing, drug trafficking, international imprisonments (including chart of rates per country), INTERPOL, smuggling, and women and global crime. Specific countries and areas of the world (Australia, Canada, Caribbean Islands, China, Eastern Europe, France, Germany, Great Britain, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Latin America, Mexico, Sub-Saharan Africa, etc.) are discussed at length with reference to crime and punishment issues. Other countries have brief mention. Use the Index in volume 4 to locate appropriate discussions.
Lewis, J., & Skutsch, C. (Eds.). (2001). The human rights encyclopedia. Armonk, NY: Sharpe Reference.
REFERENCE JC 571.L523
This three-volume set, organized by country, provides discussions that include police and law enforcement issues and prison conditions. A separate section includes discussion of general topics with comparisons among countries such as capital punishment, detention and arbitrary arrests, habeas corpus, minority rights, political prisoners, and property rights.
Shelton, D. (Ed.). (2005) Encyclopedia of Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity. Detroit: Thomson Gale.
REFERENCE HV 6322.7 .E532 2005
This three-volume set provides background on ethnic conflicts, genocide, and crimes against humanity perpetrated throughout the world. Most of the focus is on the 20th century situations, but discussions also look back to crimes of earlier centuries. Concepts such as restitutions and institutions just as the International Court of Justice are included. Volume 3 includes primary sources such as the Geneva Convention, UN Security Council Resolutions, and specific court cases, such as Amistad, Celebici, Bosnia, etc.
Sullivan, L., Haberfeld, M.,Rosen, M. & Schulz, D. (Eds.). (2005). Encyclopedia of Law Enforcement. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage
REFERENCE HV7921.E53 2005
This three-volume encyclopedia provides a “comprehensive, critical and descriptive examination of all facets of law enforcement on the state and local, federal and national, and international stages.” The volumes are organized by geographic area with Volume 3 devoted to police organizations and law enforcement from all over the world. Most countries of the world are featured with information about the police training and accountability and local crime issues. Broader topics, such as international police cooperation, police corruption, police and terrorism, are discussed from the international perspective.
Other general books in Reference Area or on Reserve:
Fairchild, E. (1993). Comparative criminal justice systems. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.
RESERVE HV7419.F35 1993
This book uses six countries (England, France, Germany, Former Soviet Union, Japan, and Saudi Arabia) as basis of comparison for discussions of law enforcement, police and community, constitutional law, criminal procedures, legal profession, courts and trials, sentencing, and prisons. Additional topics discussed are terrorism, organized crime and drugs, abortion law. This is a textbook so it is good for basic level discussion.
Morrison, A., Mann, B. (2004) International government information and country information: a subject guide. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.
REFERENCE ZA5050.M67 2004
This book provides current information about international sources – both Web based and print based. Two chapters are of special interest: (1) Crime and Criminal Justice; (2) Laws and Treaties. Many of the sources listed are generated by the United Nations, but other international organizations are included also. A helpful list of the acronyms for these international organizations is included.
Neapolitan, J. (1997) Cross-national crime: a research review and sourcebook. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.
REFERENCE HV 6251.N43 1997
The author shares his knowledge about different sources for cross-national crime data. Questions are raised about the quality of the data and recommendations are made on how to use the data for cross-national studies. The lists of statistical sources can be helpful , but this list stops with 1997 and does not include Web based sources. (So check section 3 below on” Web sites for International Criminal Justice”. )
Newman, G. (Ed.). (1999) Global report on Crime and Justice. New York: Oxford University Press.
REFERENCE HV 7431.G445 1999
This extensive report was published for the United Nations Office for Drug Control and Crime Prevention, Centre for International Crime Prevention. The report includes a discussion on the nature of crime, the operations of national criminal justice systems, and an international perspective on the state of crime prevention. Discussions include an analysis of data sources for crime statistics, punishment in different societies, drugs and drug control, firearm abuse and regulation, transnational crime and its control, etc.
Reichel, P. (2005). Comparative criminal justice systems: a topical approach. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.
RESERVE HV 7419.R45 2005 REFERENCE HV 7419.R45 2005
This book provides comparisons on topics using information from more than 30 countries. Topics include: crime, legal traditions, policing, courts, corrections, juvenile justice systems. This book is often used as a textbook.
United Nations. Yearbook of the United Nations. New York: Author.
REFERENCE JX 1977.A37 Y4
This annual report provides details about the many activities of the United Nations. The report takes time to compile and is usually published late (i.e. the 2002 Yearbook was released in 2004.) Use the annual report to learn about specific UN resolutions and documents that have been released in areas of concern such as: politicial and security issues; human rights; economic and social questions such as crime prevention, international drug control, women issues, etc. The text for only a few of the resolutions are included in the Yearbook. However, many UN documents are available through the web site for the Official Documents of the United Nations at http://documemts.un.org. Use the symbol or code for the document (example HSP/GC/19/2/Add.1) to search for a specific report. Or search the web site by subject. You can also search the catalog of the main library of the UN – the Dag Hammarskjold Library at http://unbisnet.un.org/. However, the public cannot visit the library.
Various units of the UN, such as the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, have their own web sites. (See section 3 below on” Web sites for International Criminal Justice”. ) Documents and statistics on International Criminal Justice issues are often available through these web site.
When you are looking for articles, it is best to start by searching the special electronic databases that the library provides on the library Web page. The library has paper copies of many specialized journals in the field of International Criminal Justice. (See the Journal List below.) However, the key to finding articles on specific topics is through the use of the electronic databases. The databases are available from the home page of the Library’s web site. Most will be listed in the “Shortcuts to Popular Databases”. The others will be in the alphabetic list in “Electronic Information Databases”.
When the full text of the article is not available, check for other sources for electronic copy by using the List of Full Text Electronic Journals on the library web page. You will need to remember the details about the publication, the year, the volume number and the author and title of the article. The library web page will provide additional instructions for locating the articles.
Or check CUNY+ - the Library catalog - to see if a paper copy of the journal is owned by the Lloyd Sealy Library or other CUNY libraries. Search for the journal name, not the title of the specific article! Click on the title link, then click on the College name – John Jay College. Note the call number, years included, and the format (paper or microform). Journals are shelved by call number on the 2nd floor.
The library receives many paper copies of scholarly journals and news publications that include articles on International Criminal Justice. The list below includes only a sample. Many more journals will be available through the electronic databases discussed above. It is best to start your search for articles by searching the electronic databases. However, it can be interesting to look at specific journals to gather ideas about possible topics.
The Web is a very important source for information in the International Criminal Justice field. The web sites for international organizations such as the United Nations or Human Rights Watch provide factual information about specific issues and reports on their recent activities. The full reports are often available through the web sites. A selection of those web sites is listed below. It is impossible to list all such sites, so these sites are important examples of possible web sites to use.
v CIA World Factbook
Extensive data about countries of the world with general sections on geography, people, government, economy, communications, transportation and military and a special section on the country's involvement in transnational issues. The web version of the CIA World Factbook is updated weekly.
This web site for the European Institute for Crime Prevention and Control provides studies of the criminal justice systems in specific European countries. Each study follows a specific structure so that comparisons can be made more easily by studying the same section of each report. Statistics are included, but note the statistics are only as current as the date of the report. (HEUNI is affiliated with the United Nations Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Program.)
v HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH
This web site for the Human Rights Watch (NGO) is a good example of a reliable organization that will provide reports on violations of Human Rights in countries around the world. Many publications about individual countries and an annual report of violations is available via the web site.
v International Centre for Prison Studies
This web site has statistics on prison systems and incarceration rates in over 200 countries. Reports are also included about the conditions in prisons.
INTERPOL is an international police organization which facilitates cross-border criminal police cooperation. Links are provided to the Departments of Justice in countries throughout the world.
v NCJRS Virtual Library
This web site from the National Criminal Justice Reference Service provides subject search options and links to recent reports on international criminal justice issues such as: international trafficking, transnational crime and international organized crime. Look for the search options on the far right column. Copies of reports listed without the full text may be available in the Lloyd Sealy Library. Ask at the Reference Desk on the 2nd floor .
v United Nations Surveys on Crime Trends and the Operations of Criminal Justice Systems
The purpose of this survey is to collect data on the incidence of reported crime and the operations of criminal justice systems for the purpose of improving the analysis and dissemination of that information globally.
v United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
This web site is the major gateway to information and UN publications on International efforts to reduce corruption, strengthen judicial integrity and fight international crimes. Includes the text of the International Convention against transnational organized crime.
v World Factbook of Criminal Justice Systems
This web site provides narrative descriptions of the criminal justice systems of 45 countries around the world. The original 42 descriptions were completed in 1993. The latest 5 entries including two updated country profiles were prepared in 2002.
Another kind of web site serves as a subject directory to the important web sites for a subject field – in this case International Criminal Justice and International Law. The best of those sites are listed below.
v Lloyd Sealy Library at John Jay College - Selected Internet Links
Librarians at John Jay’s library maintain a continually updated list of recommended web sites on key subjects including Criminal Justice – International and Countries of the World.
The World Criminal Justice Library Network maintains an excellent page of links to international agencies and statistical resources on criminal justice around the world.
v Law Library of Congress – International
This site provides research guidance and links to the constitutions of countries around the world and guides to international treaties.
v International Criminal Law: a selective resources guide
This web site is a very extensive guide to Internet resources on International Criminal Law (compiled by two law librarians - Marilyn J. Raisch and Gail Partin). The above link is the latest update from 2002 to their original publication which can be found at: (http://www.llrx.com/features/int_crim.htm).
v New York University Law School
The library of the New York University has a wonderful collection of links to international materials compiled by Mirela Roznovschi for International Criminal Law. More links to International Legal Databases can be found at this web link: http://www.law.nyu.edu/library/foreign_intl/).
It is a good idea to check the website of academic libraries in the schools that have established programs in international law as well as comparative law or criminal justice
v The Center on International Human Rights
publications and organizations active in the area of Human Rights. Just one caution: some of the publication links are to journals which ask for a subscription fee. You should check with the Lloyd Sealy Library about free access to the journals because the library has purchased subscriptions for the benefit of John Jay students and faculty.
News gathering is an important part of the research that involves international or comparative aspect. Getting access to foreign sources of information in addition to national mass media can be sometimes difficult. Although the Internet seems to be a direct answer for accessing the information from all over the world, it is not always obvious where to start.
In this part of the handout we present a list of electronic gateways to various news collections: newspapers, magazines, radio and TV programs. The stress is placed on international news reported by US media and information produced by non-US agencies.
These online starting points are intended both for the researchers who can only communicate in English as well for those who have proficiency in other languages.
When reading the news, put them into the historical, cultural and political perspective - pay attention to where they were originated, who published them, what is the intended audience, whether it is factual information or somebody’s opinion; analyze the pictures accompanying the article; compare and contrast the news story with follow-up articles in the same source and coverage in other sources; note what was not covered in the news story.
v Internet public library newspaper collection
This is one of the best gateways to the online editions of international newspapers arranged by country names. Be aware that many of the newspapers are published in their original language while some might have English versions. Sometimes, English edition might be shorter than the original version.
v Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty
This is a private, international communications service to Eastern and Southeastern Europe, Russia, the Caucasus, Central Asia, and the Middle East, funded by the United States Congress. RFE/RL broadcasts in 28 languages. Its multilingual website features both live and on-demand audio and text. Weekly reports on major political events and trends on sixteen regions can be found under the link http://www.rferl.org/reports
v BBC World Service
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) provides international news, analysis and information in English and 42 other languages. BBC News is the largest broadcast news operation in the world with more than 2,000 journalists and 48 newsgathering bureaus located throughout the world.
v CNN News
An American counterpart of BBC, the CNN (Cable News Network) provides national and international news online in 7 languages supplied by a global team of 4,000 reporters. Check the CNN.com International Edition by clicking on the “International Edition” button at the very top or bottom of the page (www.cnn.com), the “Languages” button is located at the bottom of the page.
v Foreign Media Reactions
This collection is produced by the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Research. Foreign media commentaries on a major U.S foreign policy issue are presented in the form of an analysis and direct quotes translated into English. Editorials and op-ed commentaries from newspapers, magazines, radio and TV programs are sorted by geographic region and country.
v LexisNexis™ Academic - News
v access from the John Jay College Library homepage www.lib.jjay.cuny.edu under the link for Electronic Information Sources
LexisNexis™ has a collection of international newspapers in English. Go to the Guided News search form and select the "World News" category and then select a region (Asia/Pacific Sources, for example) from the “Source List” category. Since the content in LexisNexis™ Academic is not separated by country of origin, you will retrieve results from both U.S. and international sources.
v Yahoo! - international editions
Yahoo!, the first online navigational guide to the Web, has offices in Europe, the Asia Pacific, Latin America, Canada and the United States. Yahoo! has international directories in 13 languages, including English. To display an international directory scroll to the bottom of the main page (www.yahoo.com) to the section "Y! International" and then choose a country.
v World Press Review Online
Worldpress.org is an online edition of the US magazine containing news and views reprinted from the press outside the United States as well as the originally written material. International press from more than 20 languages is presented here in translated, analyzed and contextualized form in English.
v ILG Radio: IBWD International Broadcasting Web directory
This is a very nicely organized directory of international broadcasting stations arranged by geographical region and country. Many radio stations keep searchable archives of their programs on the web.
v ABYZ News Links - Newspaper and News Media Guide
ABYZ News Links is a portal to online news sources from around the world. It is primarily composed of newspapers but also includes many broadcast stations, internet services, magazines, and press agencies. Please note that ABYZ News Links does not contain actual news content but only links to other news sources.
Maria Kiriakova and Gretchen Gross
 The selection is based on Natarajan, M. (2002). International criminal justice: a note on curricular resources, Journal of Criminal Justice Education, 13, 479-498 and Mueller, G. (2001). Transnational crime: definition and concepts in Williams, P. and D. Vlassis (Eds.). Combating transnational crime: concepts, activities, and responses: Portland, OR, pp. 13-21.
 Mueller, G. (2001). Transnational crime: definition and concepts in Williams, P. and D. Vlassis (Eds.). Combating transnational crime: concepts, activities, and responses: Portland, OR, pp. 13-21.
 Reichel, P. (Ed.) (2004). Handbook of transnational crime and justice. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
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