Eric P. Baumer

Eric P. Baumer

Head, Department of Sociology and Criminology

Professor of Sociology and Criminology

202 Oswald Tower
University Park , PA 16802
Office Phone: (814) 863-5436

Curriculum Vitae

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  1. Ph.D., Sociology, State University of New York at Albany


Research Interests

My research and teaching interests fall within the areas of criminology, communities and urban sociology, the sociology of law, and social demography.  I am especially interested in assessing temporal and spatial variation in levels of crime, the mobilization of law, and the application of legal sanctions. 

Current Research Projects

My current research is focused on two general questions:

(1) Why have levels of crime fallen significantly over the past several decades, and why do they now appear to be on the rise in many cities? 

I am currently engaged in a series of studies with colleagues at Penn State and elsewhere that are directed at different dimensions of this issue, including whether recent shifts in concentrated poverty are associated with crime trends, and whether repeated cross-sectional individual-level data on youth and young adults can yield new insights about the factors associated with contemporary crime reductions. 

(2) In what ways do selected individual- and community-level conditions affect exposure to crime and decisions to notify the police? 

This research encompasses several studies, supported by funding from the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS), the National Science Foundation (NSF), and the Russell Sage Foundation (RSF).  It integrates restricted-use household- and person-level data from the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) with neighborhood, city, and county data from a variety of sources to evaluate differences in crime risk and police notification between English and non-English speakers in America, and to assess the impact of a wide variety of community attributes, including neighborhood immigration context and local policing and imprisonment patterns.  

Research Interests:

Urban, Community, and Spatial Sociology:

communities and crime, mobilization of law


Criminology, Community and Urban Sociology, Law and Social Control, Demography, Quantitative Research Methods and Statistics