Arabella Kyprianides

Dr Arabella Kyprianides

Research Fellow in Policing

Tell us about yourself

I am a Research Fellow at the UCL Institute of Security and Crime Science; and I am an active member of the UCL Institute for Global City Policing (IGCP) and the Keele Policing Academic Collaboration (KPAC). I am involved in ESRC- and Nuffield-funded research grants, and various consultancy projects in areas of intervention evaluation, policing, crime and recidivism.

My research interests include public trust, police legitimacy, and compliance in the context of policing marginalised communities; as well as social determinants of wellbeing among vulnerable groups, such as social identity. I have worked with multiply marginalised people (offenders, prisoners, and homeless people) in a voluntary capacity for my PhD and now for my post-doctoral research positions and consultancy work.

Why did you want to become a Research Affiliate?

I recently received an ESRC grant award – ‘Policing and public health: Exploring new ways to unlock the social cure’ which commenced in May 2023. The aim of the project is to develop a greater understanding of the impact of policing on the well-being of those who have meaningful interactions with police and who are experiencing poor mental health. Recognising the volume of offences motivated by (or otherwise linked to) poor mental health, it will also investigate whether policing can be used more effectively to divert people away from re-offending. The project will seek to combine the growing field of research on the ‘social cure’ engendered through social identification with criminological understandings of the implications of ‘police contact’ with the community.

There are clear synergies between my project and the programme of work of the ESRC Vulnerability & Policing Futures Research Centre that aims to understand how vulnerabilities are produced, exacerbated and addressed by policing, exploring how the police and other services can best work together to prevent and reduce vulnerabilities.

How does your research connect to the Centre’s mission and values?

My research revolves around policing and vulnerable groups, particularly exploring their interactions with other service providers. Apart from my recent ESRC grant award (mentioned above), my post-doctoral research focused on advancing Procedural Justice Theory’s causal claims in citizens’ encounters with police.

This project (the CONSIL project) aimed to create interdisciplinary knowledge about the interactions between vulnerability and service providers’ responses, driving innovative approaches to address the needs of vulnerable groups.

Regarding the Centre’s focus, my research delved into policing the street population. Additionally, I served as the Secretariat for the Global Law Enforcement & Public Health Alliance (GLEPHA) Violence Prevention Special Interest group, launched in 2021.

My experience prior to joining UCL includes five years of research within the criminal justice system, focusing on social identity processes in prisoner populations to enhance prisoner well-being. I also interned at the Home Office’s Crime and Policing Analysis Unit and served as an independent reviewer at a prison.

Ultimately, my passion lies in using theory and research to inform policy, particularly in understanding and improving the policing of marginalised groups who often have the most significant interactions with the police.