Sarah J Brown

Sarah J Brown
University of the West of England, Bristol | UWE Bristol · Department of Health and Applied Social Sciences

Ph.D

About

81
Publications
86,025
Reads
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1,778
Citations
Additional affiliations
April 2018 - April 2021
University of the Sunshine Coast
Position
  • Professor
November 1999 - August 2019
Coventry University
Position
  • Professor
September 1998 - November 1999
The University of Northampton
Position
  • Lecturer in Psychology
Education
September 1995 - August 1998
The University of Manchester
Field of study
  • Evaluation of Sex Offender Treatment Programmes
September 1994 - August 1995
Cardiff University
Field of study
  • Social Science Research Methods
September 1991 - June 1994
Cardiff University
Field of study
  • Psychology & Sociology

Publications

Publications (81)
Poster
Full-text available
Objectives: Police negotiators are specialist officers utilised internationally by police forces to resolve critical incidents. Whilst the role has been heavily documented in some parts of the world (namely the United States of America), there is a lack of literature relating to the organisational and operational processes and procedures in place f...
Article
Background: Despite increased institutional safeguards and regularly updated statutory guidance that stresses safeguarding is ‘everybody's responsibility’, children continue to be sexually abused in institutional contexts in England and Wales. There also remains a lack of contemporary knowledge about institutions' responses to concerns about [risk...
Chapter
Sexual abuse takes place in several forms, and is a serious public health problem that requires a multidisciplinary approach. Sharing evidence-based or best practices among stakeholders is of crucial importance. Professional organisations can facilitate this. In this chapter, we introduce three national professional organisations, representing five...
Article
Full-text available
Hostage and crisis negotiators are specialist police officers utilised internationally by police forces to resolve hostage and crisis incidents. Whilst the role has been heavily documented in some parts of the world (namely the United States of America), there is a lack of literature relating to the organisational and operational processes and proc...
Article
Full-text available
The population of older individuals convicted of sexual offenses (OSOs) is rapidly increasing. However, we have little understanding of their characteristics (e.g., demographic, psychological, individual, offense, and risk) and needs. To identify any similarities or differences that are unique to older individuals convicted of sexual offending, it...
Technical Report
The Truth Project is a core part of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (‘the Inquiry’) alongside public hearings and research. It was set up to hear and learn from the experiences of victims and survivors of child sexual abuse1 in England and Wales. With the consent of participants, the Inquiry uses Truth Project information in a varie...
Technical Report
The Truth Project is a core part of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (‘the Inquiry’) alongside Public Hearings and Research. It was set up to hear and learn from the experiences of victims and survivors of child sexual abuse in England and Wales. It offers victims and survivors an opportunity to share experiences of child sexual abus...
Technical Report
This paper brings together learning from existing research on child sexual abuse (CSA) perpetration by adults; CSA perpetrated by young people is common, and is discussed in the CSA Centre’s ‘Key messages’ paper on harmful sexual behaviour. Available at: https://www.csacentre.org.uk/resources/key-messages/csa-perpetrated-by-adults/
Chapter
This chapter takes a critical view of the prevention and intervention approaches used in children sexual exploitation (CSE) in the UK. The author presents an exploration of the way risk, vulnerability and educative responses to CSE may perpetuate victim blaming of children and misuse ‘prevention’ approaches. The chapter includes an examination of t...
Article
Integrated Offender Management was introduced by the Home Office and Ministry of Justice in 2009. Since its introduction, it has been piloted, developed and implemented across probation and policing areas within England and Wales. The scheme aims to reduce reoffending through the targeting of specific cohorts of offenders within local areas. Unders...
Article
Full-text available
Hostage and crisis negotiation is one tactical option available to incident commanders when responding to critical incidents. Whilst several models of negotiation exist, there is limited research addressing negotiation from a United Kingdom perspective. This paper presents findings from semi-structured interviews with 15 negotiators from nine polic...
Article
This is a protocol for a Cochrane Review (Intervention). The objectives are as follows: To assess the effects of psychosocial interventions on mental health and well-being for survivors of rape and sexual assault experienced during adulthood.
Presentation
Full-text available
Objectives: Hostage and crisis negotiation is one of the tactical options available to police incident commanders when responding to hostage or crisis incidents. Whilst there are several models of negotiation in existence, there is limited research addressing negotiation from a United Kingdom perspective. As such, the current research attempts to...
Chapter
This chapter provides a brief overview of sexual offenses and those who commit them and the reasons for the sexual offenses. It is important to note that pedophilia and other paraphilias have distinct clinical definitions and criteria for diagnosis. Most of the theories that have been developed to explain sexual offending focus on factors that rela...
Article
Full-text available
Noncompletion of group offending behavior programs is a common problem, indicating barriers to engagement. While existing theoretical models have accounted for determinants of motivation, little focus has been directed towards barriers to engagement. The authors developed the program engagement theory (PET) which not only accounts for the determina...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose Hostage and crisis negotiators serve a vital function within society by resolving hostage/crisis incidents. This role, performed by specially trained police ‘volunteers’ helps to prevent numerous fatalities, and forms an important part of the modern policing repertoire. There is limited research that identifies the experiences of police off...
Article
In 2016, Thames Valley Police secured two years of funding from the Home Office Innovation Fund to develop and test a proof of concept around Predictive Harm Analytics (PHA). Through maximising the use of combined partnership data in Multi Agency Safeguarding Hubs (MASH) the objective was to proactively identify hidden harm. The aim of the project...
Article
Full-text available
Hostage and crisis negotiation is well established as a police tool, and there is a growing body of literature that provides academic insight into the phenomenon. Academics have developed a corpus of literature to explain the way negotiators operate/how they can resolve incidents successfully. Whilst research in this area has originated from variou...
Article
Tools to assess the risk of becoming a victim of child sexual exploitation (CSE) have been developed by UK CSE practitioners based on their professional experiences, with little evidence underpinning their development, and no evaluation/validation. Little is known about how they are used in practice. This paper summarizes two studies. The first stu...
Article
Full-text available
The research described in this article explores decision-making styles and levels of emotional intelligence displayed by police hostage and crisis negotiators in the United Kingdom. One hundred and seventeen negotiators from 21 police forces took part in the research and their data were compared with 118 non-negotiator trained police officers and 2...
Article
This study examined the interaction between structure and agency for individuals in the first or early phase of primary desistance (1 year offending free) from intimate partner violence (IPV). Narrative accounts of perpetrators, survivors, and IPV program facilitators were analyzed using Thematic Analysis. Changes in the self and the contexts, stru...
Article
Full-text available
Hostage and crisis negotiators serve a vital function within modern-day policing and can play a role in whether individuals live or die. As such, it is important for us to understand which police officers are more suited to this complex and challenging role, to ensure that the most effective negotiators are selected and trained. The current paper o...
Article
Full-text available
Individuals convicted of sexual offenses are rarely asked their views of the police and courts. The aims of this study were to examine the impact of feelings of guilt on perceptions of the police and police interview outcomes and spill-over effects from perceptions of the police to perceptions of the courts. Participants were 116 adult males incarc...
Technical Report
https://www.csacentre.org.uk/csa-centre-prod/ assets/File/CSE%20perpetrators%202%20-%20Characteristics%20and%20motivations%20of%20perpetrators% 20of%20CSE.pdf
Technical Report
https://www.csacentre.org.uk/csa-centre-prod/assets/File/CSE%20 perpetrators%203%20-%20Characteristics%20and%20perspectives%20of%20adults%20who%20have%20sexually %20exploited%20children.pdf
Article
Full-text available
The Integrated Offender Management (IOM) framework was introduced in England and Wales in 2009. The aims of the research outlined in this paper were to examine the impact of the introduction of an Integrated Offender Management (IOM) approach in one large police force region and the perceptions of it by offenders and staff. There were two parts to...
Article
Full-text available
Offender engagement in group offending behavior programs is poorly understood and under-theorized. In addition, there is no research on facilitators’ engagement. This paper presents the first ever theory to address this gap. A Program Engagement Theory (PET) was derived from a constructivist grounded theory analysis, that accounts for both facilita...
Article
Sexual assault on university campuses has garnered increased attention in recent years. A systematic review was conducted to identify the factors associated with bystander intervention regarding sexual assault on university campuses. Currently, no published systematic reviews exist within this area. Twenty-eight studies were reviewed according to f...
Article
Full-text available
Previous research indicates considerable overlap between populations of boys who are victimized and boys who victimize others. This study was concerned with whether a systems-focused treatment program designed to address individual and systemic risk factors associated with the perpetration of sexual and violent crimes might also be successful in re...
Technical Report
Full-text available
https://www.csacentre.org.uk/research-publications/cse-risk-tools/exploratory-study-on-the-use-of-tools-and-checklists-to-assess-risk-of-child-sexual-exploitation/
Article
Full-text available
In 2014, research was undertaken to examine social workers’ confidence, understanding and awareness of child sexual abuse (CSA) as it was suggested that a decline in numbers of reported incidents might be due to a decline in levels of understanding and awareness. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with twenty-five first-line, middle and seni...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This review, looking at the risk indicators and protective factors for Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation, was carried out by Coventry University on behalf of the Early Intervention Foundation, and funded by the Home Office. It aims to provide policy makers and practitioners with an assessment of the best evidence for identifying and appraising ri...
Article
Full-text available
This study explored sex offenders’ parental and adult attachment difficulties and assessed the extent to which these were associated with preferences for therapists’ interpersonal qualities. One-hundred and twelve adult male child sexual offenders were invited to provide self-report data on their attachment histories, adult attachments and preferen...
Article
Perceptions of probation staff and offenders were explored regarding the effectiveness of an individual workbook intervention for intimate partner violence (IPV), based on the Integrated Domestic Abuse Programme, a group intervention for IPV offenders in the UK. Using thematic analysis, interview transcripts from 11 probation staff and 2 offenders...
Article
Full-text available
The inconsistent definition of empathy has had a negative impact on both research and practice. The aim of this article is to review and critically appraise a range of definitions of empathy and, through considered analysis, to develop a new conceptualisation. From the examination of 43 discrete definitions, 8 themes relating to the nature of empat...
Article
Full-text available
Aims and objectivesTo report findings from a qualitative study of key stakeholders’ perspectives on ‘compassion’ in the health care context. To present the ‘Framework for Compassionate Interpersonal Relations’.Background Although many research articles, health policies and health care strategies identify compassion as an underpinning value and key...
Article
Full-text available
Intimate partner violence (IPV) is an international issue that social and criminal justice workers will encounter regularly. It has been identified that men can, and do stop using, or desist from, IPV although it is unclear how this process of change develops. This article introduces a conceptual model to outline how the process of desistance evolv...
Article
Full-text available
A sample of males who had first committed sexual offences against children in either adolescence (n=230; M=14.0 years, SD=1.5) or adulthood (n=280; M=34.4 years, SD=11.7) were compared on measures relating to the circumstances of their first known sexual abuse incident. Considerable diversity in the circumstances of these first incidents was observ...
Article
The transition from persistence to desistance in male perpetrators of intimate partner violence (IPV) is an understudied phenomenon. This article examines the factors that initiate and facilitate primary desistance from IPV. The narratives of 22 male perpetrators of IPV (13 desisters and 9 persisters), 7 female survivors, and 9 programme (IPV inter...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of this study was to examine from the routine activities approach how victim age might help to explain the timing, context and nature of offenders’ first known contact sexual abuse incident. One-hundred adult male child sexual abusers (M = 45.8 years, SD = 12.2; range = 20–84) were surveyed about the first time they had sexual contact with...
Article
Full-text available
It is well established that personality pathology has been associated with the onset and continued perpetration of intimate partner violence, yet if and how this relates to the cessation of such behaviours remains unclear. The aim of this study was to determine whether personality pathology differentiated 37 intimate partner violent men who had sus...
Chapter
Violence risk assessment has become an important part of contemporary practice in criminal and civil justice processes and mental health services across Australia. In this chapter the strengths and weaknesses of the range of different approaches that are available to the professional for assessing and managing violence risk are discussed. Methods f...
Article
Full-text available
In this piece of research, the traits and characteristics held by police hostage (crisis) negotiators in the UK are explored, with specific reference to personality, coping style and cognitive emotion regulation. One hundred and seventeen hostage negotiators from 21 UK police forces took part in the research and their data were compared with 118 no...
Article
Full-text available
Approximately half of sexual offenders in prison and community settings refuse to participate in sex offender treatment programmes; however, the reasons for this remain largely unexplored. This pilot study used the previously untested Treatment Refusal Scale*Sexual Offender Version in an English prison, with 72 adult males (63 treatment accepters a...
Article
Client engagement has been associated with positive psychotherapeutic outcomes, yet it is relatively under-theorized. The aims of this review were to establish how client engagement with psychotherapeutic interventions targeting psychological or behavioral change has been operationally defined and assessed, and the associated client characteristics...
Article
The aim of this review is to establish how offender engagement within group programs has been conceptualized, defined or assessed, and the factors that are associated with it. Existing models describe determinants of engagement and the process of behavioral change, but there is little in the way of theory explaining the process of engagement in tre...
Article
This review consolidates the research on perceptions of risk and its antecedents to improve our understanding of the factors that influence perceptions of risk. The evidence is evaluated against the available models, theories and explanations. Online databases, relevant journals and books were searched using key words resulting in a total of 30 pap...
Article
Evidence suggests that a significant proportion of men who have been violent towards their partners desist from such violent behaviors; yet, research examining desistance from intimate partner violence (IPV) is lim- ited. This omission is surprising given that an understanding of desistance processes is required to inform evidence-based IPV interve...
Article
Ample evidence exists that offenders eventually terminate their criminal careers, and this holds true for violent offenders. The causal mechanisms responsible for triggering and maintaining this process remain unclear; meaning that desistance from violence is poorly understood. This comprehensive review of the literature revealed that research in t...
Article
Full-text available
To examine the links between empathy and cognitions, 50 interview transcripts were analysed from a sample of male sex offenders who had abused children, recruited from four prisons in the North Island of New Zealand. Thematic analysis revealed an overarching framework where participants appeared to create ‘‘psychologically comfortable positions’’ t...
Article
Full-text available
This article explores the potential role of hostage negotiator characteristics and the impact of psychological constructs on negotiator success. It explores the role of Personality, Decision-Making Style, Coping Style, Cognitive Coping Style and Emotion Regulation and Emotional Intelligence within high stress environments and occupations. The findi...
Article
This article explores the potential role of hostage negotiator characteristics and the impact of certain psychological constructs on negotiator success. It explores the role of Personality, Decision-Making Style, Coping Style, Cognitive Coping Style and Emotion Regulation and Emotional Intelligence within high stress environments and occupations. T...
Chapter
In the evaluation of most interventions in criminal justice settings, evaluators have no control over assignment to treatment and control/comparison conditions, which means that the treated and comparison groups may have differences that lead to biased conclusions regarding treatment effectiveness. Propensity score analysis can be used to balance t...
Article
Full-text available
An empathy-related component has been included in most sex offender treatment programs since the 1980s; however, research linking empathy to sexual offending and/or to treatment outcome has produced mixed findings. This study examined the relationship between victim specific empathy, general empathy, and overall treatment change (determined by resp...
Article
Full-text available
Research investigating attitudes toward sex offenders has failed to specify the gender of the ‘‘sex offenders’’. Given that most participants are unlikely to think of women as sex offenders, it is likely that reported attitudes relate to male sex offenders. This study investigated the attitudes towards female sex offenders of 92 members of staff em...
Article
It is generally assumed that empathy acts to disinhibit behaviour that could be perceived as detrimental to others, and as a result is a common feature of offender treatment programmes. The present research hypothesised that empathy in all populations is both a situational and a selective process that is ultimately governed by self-interest, and fu...
Article
Full-text available
This article aims to outline current responses to sexual grooming; specific attention will be given to new legislation introduced in England and Wales under the Sexual Offences Act 2003. Following an outline of this new legislation, consideration will be given to its effectiveness, including practical difficulties that are likely to restrict its sc...
Article
The current review aims to outline the existing understanding of sexual grooming. Issues of poor definition, the adoption of the term ''grooming'' and the prevalence of sexual grooming will be discussed. Consideration will be given to how prominent theories of child sexual abuse often neglect sexual grooming. This will be followed by a detailed acc...
Article
The role of cognitions has been widely acknowledged in research, where distorted thinking is recognized as an important factor in both the initiation and maintenance of child sexual abuse. More recently, there has been an emergence of data-driven descriptive accounts based on interviews and analysis of texts formed by the child abuser. Researchers...
Book
http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9780415732475/ Research Methods for Forensic Psychologists is an accessible and comprehensive textbook that introduces students to the research process in forensic psychology. Adopting a problem-based learning approach, this book offers a ‘how-to’ guide to the whole research process and empowers readers to dev...
Book
This book aims to provide an introduction and overview of sex offender treatment programmes, designed for students and practitioners coming to this field. It seeks to describe the development, theoretical underpinnings, treatment goals and operation of cognitive-behavioural and other programmes to an audience unfamiliar with this form of rehabilita...
Chapter
The study of collaborative learning has a relatively brief history, yet there have been notable changes in the nature of the research being undertaken in this field. Initially, the primary aim was to determine whether and when collaborative learning was more effective than learning alone and there is a substantial body of empirical evidence demonst...
Article
Purpose. To investigate public attitudes towards the treatment of sex offenders, and more specifically to investigate attitudes and anticipated behaviour towards a sex offender treatment centre being located in the local community and the acceptance, into the community, of known, convicted, sex offenders who have completed their sentences. Methods....

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Projects

Projects (4)
Project
Conduct a cross-cultural comparison between the UK and Australia, to identify how university students in the UK and Australia perceive sexual assault, the negative consequences associated with sexual assault, and what influences the likelihood of bystander intervention.
Project
Hostage and crisis negotiators are police officers who have been trained to respond to and resolve hostage and crisis incidents. They are often required to respond to highly-pressurised and emotive incidents that may last for protracted periods of time and are likely to encounter situations whereby their actions could play a role in whether individuals live or die. The first aim of the current thesis was to identify whether negotiators in the United Kingdom (UK) possess certain traits or characteristics that serve to enable them to perform their role effectively and differentiate them from the wider police population. The first phase of the research involved a quantitative cross-sectional comparison of a sample of hostage and crisis negotiators (n = 117) with a sample of non-negotiator police officers (n = 118) from 21 UK forces and a sample of students (n = 203) utilising a psychometric test battery measuring five constructs previously identified within the literature as playing a role in success within occupational settings: Personality, Coping Style, Cognitive Emotion Regulation, Decision-Making Style and Emotional Intelligence. The findings refuted the existence of a “unique hostage and crisis negotiator profile” but confirmed the existence of a unique “police officer profile” by demonstrating significant differences between both police samples and the student sample in relation to all constructs measured. These findings are discussed with reference to the implications for the selection, training and CPD of UK negotiators. Hostage and crisis negotiation is one of many options available to police incident commanders and is well-established as an effective means of resolving hostage and crisis incidents. Whilst there is a plethora of published literature relating to the entity of hostage and crisis negotiation, the majority of this literature has been developed within the United States of America (USA), on the basis of USA negotiator deployments and experiences. The second aim, therefore, was to provide an insight into the discipline of negotiation in the UK by conducting a constructivist grounded theory analysis of the experiences of negotiators as derived from semi-structured interviews with 15 negotiators from nine UK police forces. The findings allowed for the development of five grounded theoretical micro-models: a) The Nature and Characteristics of UK Hostage and Crisis Negotiation, b) The UK Hostage and Crisis Negotiator Experience, c) The UK-Centric D.I.A.M.O.N.D. Procedural Model of Hostage and Crisis Negotiation, d) The UK Hostage and Crisis Negotiator Journey, and e) The Self-Perceived Successful UK Hostage and Crisis Negotiator Profile. These micro-models are discussed with reference to their implications for hostage and crisis negotiation policy and practice in a UK-centric context.