KSS CRC > Research


We have led the way in creating our own in-house research unit. Our researchers work with support from our business intelligence unit to find out what is effective in reducing reoffending. To keep pace, evidence-based analysis is vital to understand the needs of our service users and the changing nature of crime.

Our research covers:

Service models
Evaluating organisational processes to help shape management structures, staff development, risk management and court enforcement.

Working with people on probation
Designing, trialling and evaluating approaches to working with people on probation, along with their families, other agencies and communities.

Service user engagement
Looking at service user engagement approaches from elsewhere in the UK and around the world.

Evaluating the effectiveness of programmes and interventions and how they help reduce reoffending.

Supervision and management practices
Raising awareness of best practice in the supervision and management of service users.

Our commitment to produce ethical and responsible research is set out in our strategy and code of ethics:

We are also committed to sharing our research findings, reports and insights with people we support; practitioners and partners across the criminal justice sector, including universities, charities and professional organisations.

We share our work through academic and trade journals such as Probation Quarterly and the Probation Journal.

Get involved

We are interested in working with the wider research, academic and justice community.

To talk to a member of our research team or to arrange a visit to our research unit, please email:

Our researchers

Dr Kerry Ellis-Devitt

Senior Probation Practice Researcher
Kerry has 12 years’ experience in criminal justice research. Before joining KSS CRC, she was a senior lecturer at the University of Portsmouth, teaching criminology, psychology and criminal justice. Her PhD thesis, ‘The life-stories of young adult men in the criminal justice system: a critical narrative analysis” was completed in February 2020. Kerry has published work on a range of topics including, young adults in the criminal justice system, supporting disadvantaged and vulnerable young adults, and more recently topics related to the work of the probation service. Kerry has also held roles in the charity sector.
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Dr David Coley

Senior Probation Practice Researcher
David originally trained in social work with a focus on mental health and disability. Prior to this role, he was a probation officer for eight years before he went on to train and mentor probation staff. David’s interests lie in continuous professional development and he has conducted several research studies into adult learning within a work-based criminal justice context - Reflective Practice and Questions of Identity (Probation Quarterly, June 2018). David has supervised professional practice learning at BA and MA levels and continues to support colleagues to do academic research studies while in work. David was awarded his PhD in 2014 on research working.
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Stacey researcher

Stacey Musimbe-Rix

Probation Practice Researcher
Stacey holds an LLB law degree and a master's in criminal law and criminal justice. Her master's research looked at the contribution of the criminal justice system in Zimbabwe to low conviction rates for rape. She started her PhD with the University of Sussex and hopes to complete this during her time at KSS CRC. Her research interests are in gender-based violence, hate crime, restorative justice and comparative criminal justice. Before joining KSS CRC she held various roles in the charity sector, working with victims of crime and underprivileged youth.
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Jess Lawrence Research Assistant

Jess Lawrence

Probation Practice Research Assistant
Jess’ background is in social psychology, with her academic research focused on tackling prejudice and negative attitudes towards minority groups. She has worked at KSS CRC for over two years, starting as case administrator, then moving to the Excellence and Effectiveness directorate as the data assurance coordinator, and now joining the Research and Policy Unit. Jess’ research interests include LGBTQ+ matters and she specialises in quantitative research methods.
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