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Dr. Gavin Slade

Freie Universität Berlin

Center for Area Studies

Postdoctoral Fellow



DPhil in Law St. Antony’s College & Centre for Criminology, University of Oxford, Oct 2007-April 2011.


MSc with Distinction Research Methods in Criminology and Criminal Justice. Centre for Criminology, University of Oxford. Sept 2006-Sept 2007


MA with Distinction Political Science Central European University (CEU), Budapest, Sept 2004–June 2005.


BA with First Class Joint Honours, History and Philosophy. University of Wales, Lampeter, (UWL) Oct 1998-July 2001.




Limited Term Assistant Professor in Criminology, Centre for Criminology and Socio-Legal Studies, University of Toronto. July2013-July2014.


Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, Centre for Criminology and Socio-Legal Studies, University of Toronto, Canada Sept 2012-July2013


Researcher, Centre for Criminology, Oxford University: Conducted an in depth ethnography of an Immigration Removal Centre in the UK, included over 50 interviews with detainees and staff, administration of a survey on the issue of coping and depression, and documentary analysis. March-June 2012


Researcher: Caucasus Research and Resource Centers, Tbilisi, Georgia, Feb 2012-June 2012 (p/t).


Visiting Lecturer, Sep-Dec 2011 Faculty of Graduate Studies, Ilia Chavchavadze State University, Tbilisi, Georgia.


International Research Fellow: Caucasus Research and Resource Centers, Tbilisi, Georgia Jan 2011-Aug 2011.


Copy Editor: Center of Economic & Financial Research, Moscow, Russia. Edited World Bank publication ‘Beyond Transition.’ Part-time Oct 2005-Oct 2008.


English Teacher: Various companies, Moscow, Russia Business English at e.g. Alfa Bank, Deutsche Bank, Vimpelcom, Linia Prava. Oct 2001-Jul 2004 & Oct 2005-Aug 2006

Title of research project:

Gulag Legacies: Prison Reform, Violence and Social Order in Post-Soviet Lithuania, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan

Focus of research:

The camp system of the Soviet Gulag developed complex forms of informal prisoner self-governance. The practices of these governance forms constituted a penal subculture that frames organized crime in the region in the late Soviet and post-Soviet periods. The research looks at attempts to dismantle this system in three cases. It looks at the consequences of attacks on the subculture under the rubric of prison reform in terms of social order, disturbances and violence.


Prison reform, violence, subculture, informal governance, social order, post-Soviet

Regional focus:

Post-Soviet Periphery: Baltics (Lithuania), the Caucasus (Georgia) and Central Asia (Kyrgyzstan)


Prison reform in the post-Soviet region is often part of anti-organized crime policy. The camps of the Soviet Union developed highly complex informal systems of self-governance among prisoners that later formed a backdrop for the practices of organized crime outside the prison. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union all successor states have attempted in some way to reform this system in the language of fighting organized crime as opposed to human rights or improving conditions. However, during reform, prison disturbances and violence appear to increase. The project aims to understand generally the effects of reform on social order and relations among prisoners as well as the micro-sociological bases for violence and disturbances during reform.


The project takes three case studies, Lithuania, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan. These are chosen broadly on the independent variable: the presence of prison reform. Through in depth interviewing of ex prisoners and prisoners about their lives in the reforming prison system, the analysis of government reports and statistics the project will provide a comparative account of the effects of reform on interpersonal violence as well as the governance of social life in prison.


The project aims to have impacts for prison sociologists on our understanding of prison life in extreme transition, human rights advocates, policy-makers and the international community as to what reform means and what it actually achieves in these countries. The project will also speak to those studying forms of order in prison in an international perspective, providing case studies from a non-Western region often neglected by criminologists.



Slade G. 2013. Reorganizing Crime: Mafia and Anti-Mafia in Post-Soviet Georgia (Oxford: Oxford University Press)


Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles


Bosworth M. & Slade G. 2014. ‘In Search of Recognition: Gender and Staff-Detainee Relationships in an British Immigration Removal Centre’ Punishment & Society 16/2 169-186


Slade G. & Tangiashvili N. 2014. ‘Zero Tolerance Schooling: Education Policy, Crime and Democracy in Post-Soviet Georgia’ Post-Soviet Affairs 30/5 416-440


Slade G. 2012. ‘No Country for Made Men: the Decline of the Mafia in Post-Soviet Georgia.’ Law and Society Review 46/3 623-649


Slade, G. 2012. ‘Georgia’s War on Crime: Creating Security in a post-Revolutionary Context.’ European Security 21/1 37-56


Slade, G. 2007 ‘The Threat of the Thief. Who has Normative Influence in Georgian Society?’in Global Crime 8/2


Slade, G. 2007 ‘Georgia and Thieves-in-Law: Review Article’in Global Crime, 8/3

In preparation


Slade G. & Light M. (forthcoming) ‘Crime after Communism: Criminal Justice Developments and Criminological Debates. Introduction.’In Slade G. & Light M. (eds). Crime and Criminal Justice in the Post-Soviet Region. Theoretical Criminology: Special Edition. (Accepted. Due 2015)


Piacentini L. & Slade G. (forthcoming) ‘The Resilience of Carceral Collectivism: Prison Reform in Russia and Georgia.’ In Slade G. & Light M. (eds.) Crime and Criminal Justice in the Post-Soviet Region. Theoretical Criminology: Special Edition. (Accepted. Due 2015)


Slade G. (forthcoming) ‘The Criminology of Mafias’ in International Encyclopedia of Social and Behavioural Sciences (2nd ed.) (Oxford: Elsevier. Accepted. Due 2015)


Slade G. (forthcoming) ‘Punishment and State-Building in Post-Soviet Georgia.’ In Schatz E. & Heathershaw J. (eds). The Strength of Weak States in Eurasia (Accepted. Due 2015)


Slade G. (forthcoming) ‘Punishment, Demography and Political Economy in the Post-Soviet Region.’ Sozzo M. & Melossi D (eds). The Political Economy of Punishment Today: Visions, Debates and Challenges (Due 2016)

Select Reports/Non-Peer Reviewed


Slade G. et al. 2014. ‘Crime and Expressive Punishment: the Prevalence and Causes of Human Rights Abuse in Georgia's Penal System.’ Open Society Georgia Foundation, Tbilisi.


Slade G. 2014 ‘Attitudes to the Judiciary in Georgia’ Caucasus Research and Resource Centers, for East West Management Institute, Tbilisi, Georgia.


Bosworth M., Kellezi B & Slade G. 2012. ‘Quality of Life in Detention: IRC Morton Hall.’ (UK Home Office Report). Oxford University.

Slade G. 2012. ‘Attitudes to the Judiciary in Georgia’ Caucasus Research and Resource Centers, for East West Management Institute, Tbilisi, Georgia.