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Jessie Slepicka is a Ph.D. Candidate in Criminology at The Pennsylvania State University. His research agenda and teaching interests broadly address three main areas: (1) social change and differentiation (e.g., age, gender, race/ethnicity) in criminal behavior, justice contact, and sanctions handed out by criminal justice organizations, using quantitative and mixed method techniques to study historical and contemporary crime patterns/trends; (2) green criminology and environmental sociology, or the spatiotemporal investigation of causes and consequences of harm/crime against the environment from sociological and political-economic frames of reference; and (3) the nuances, intricacies, and ultimate advancements of historical and contemporary social scientific theory. His research has been published in peer-reviewed outlets such as: Journal of Criminal Justice; Criminology, Criminal Justice, Law & Society; Journal of Interpersonal Violence; Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency; Annual Review of Criminology; Criminal Justice and Behavior; Federal Probation; and Sociology of Education.
Jessie’s dissertation research, specifically, investigates the spatiotemporal distribution of environmental harms/hazards, socially differential levels of exposure to ecological withdrawals and additions, and rates of criminal violence both domestically and cross-nationally. The flexible environmental database he has constructed merges environmental harm/toxicity data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Toxic Release Inventory, Integrated Risk Information System, Risk-Screening Environmental Indicators Model, Air Quality System, Enforcement and Compliance History Online, and Emergency Response Notification System, as well as ecological data from the Global Footprint Network, the Palmer Drought Severity Index, and the National Centers for Environmental Information—representing a robust compilation of environmental indicators that are applicable to a variety of research questions at varied levels of analysis. The three empirical chapters of his dissertation analyze a variety of social outcomes, including: (1) an analysis of the spatial distribution of environmental harms across community social status indicators (e.g., racial composition, structural disadvantage); (2) an investigation of ecological toxicity and rates of violent and property crime in the US, net of theoretically relevant macro-structural covariates of crime; and (3) a cross-national assessment of the environmental hazard-homicide relationship within and across countries during the 21st century.