dr. VR van der Geest

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Victor van der Geest is assistant professor in Criminology at VU Amsterdam. He is a graduate in developmental psychology, and in 2011 he received his PhD (with honours) for a dissertation on the criminal careers and employment pathways of formerly institutionalized youths.

His current research focuses on developmental features of the criminal career, the link between work and crime, life-course explanations of white-collar crime, and the working lives of organized crime offenders. He is one of the principal investigators who initiated the 17Up Project, a longitudinal study on the life-course outcomes of formerly institutionalized youth. Het is also one of the principal investigators who initiated the IN-CARE Project in 2021, a longitudinal study on vulnerable parenthood in formerly institutionalized youth.

Victor conducts research in the programme Empirical and normative studies, coordinates the Criminology research track programme, and chairs the European working group for developmental and life-course criminology. He has experience in using quantitative research methods (e.g. group-based trajectory modeling and fixed-effects models), conducting semi-structured interviews, and analyzing population-based microdata (CBS).

Victor's research has shown that high frequency offenders, who seem more entrenched in a deviant lifestyle, benefit less from regular employment, and the effect of incarceration (over and above selection) on employment differs between groups. More recently, he also started to develop an interest in white-collar criminology and organized crime, and he used his insights from life-course criminology to explain specific types of work-related criminal behavior.

His studies appeared in criminological journals (Criminology, Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency, Crime and Delinquency) and he is co-editor of the International Handbook of Life-course Criminology.

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