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Name: Alexandra Cox
Title: Assistant Professor
Academic Rank: Assistant Professor
Department: Sociology

Expertise Keywords: desistance, juvenile justice, sentencing mitigation, sentencing mitigation

Available For: interviews, essays, speaking

Expertise: I have my Ph.D. in Criminology from the University of Cambridge. I was selected for a prestigious Soros Justice Fellowship, in which I did an action research project about prison staff resistance to reform and prison closures. Prior to obtaining my Ph.D., I did work as a researcher in the field of drug policy reform, and then I worked as a social worker and mitigation specialist at a public defender's office in Harlem (New York City).

Currrent Research: I am in contract with Rutgers University Press for my book on young people's experiences of the juvenile justice system.

Contact Information

E-mail Address: coxa@newpaltz.edu
Communication & Marketing: 845-257-3245

Other Information

Positions held prior to joining SUNY New Paltz:
Mitigation Specialist, Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem
Soros Justice Fellow
Gates Cambridge Scholar
Senior Research Associate, Drug Policy Alliance


Yale University 1997-2001 BA 2001 American Studies
University of Cambridge 2007-2012 Ph.D. 2012 Criminology
University of Cambridge 2006-2007 MPhil 2007 Criminological Research


Gates Cambridge Scholarship, awarded to outstanding students who exhibit leadership potential and an ability to positively affect the lives of others (2007)
Overseas Research Scholarship, awarded by the British government to students at the top of their class (2007)
Soros Justice Advocacy Fellowship, awarded to outstanding individuals in the field of criminal justice reform (2010)

Other professional activities

I am a member of the WGXC community radio Prison Voices Project media collective. I co-produce radio shows on issues involving imprisonment and mass criminalization.

Organizational Memberships

Board Member, Literacy for Incarcerated Teens (2010-present)

Board Member, Drama Club (2014-present)

American Sociological Association

American Society of Criminology

Law and Society Association


Article, 2015, “Fresh Air Funds and Functional Families: the Enduring Politics of Race, Family and Place in Juvenile Justice” Theoretical Criminology
Book chapter, 2014, ‘Brain Science and Juvenile Justice: Questions for Policy and Practice’ in Juvenile Justice Sourcebook: Past Present and Future, New York: Oxford University Press (2nd Edition)
Article, 2013, 'New Visions of Social Control? Young People's Perceptions of Community Penalties,' Journal of Youth Studies
Book chapter, 2012, ‘Anchoring Identity: The Construction of Self For and By Young Offenders in England and the USA’ Youth Matters: Critical Geographies of Childhood and Youth: Policy and Practice, Cambridge: Policy Press.
Book chapter (with Loraine Gelsthorpe) (2012) ‘Creative Encounters in Prisons’ in Cheliotis, L. (editor) The Arts of Imprisonment: Essays on Control, Resistance and Empowerment, Aldershot: Ashgate.
Article (2011) ‘Doing the Programme or Doing Me? The Pains of Youth Imprisonment,‘ Punishment & Society, 13(5)
Article (2009) Rooting Respect: Young People’s Perspectives on Respect, Responsibility and Government in the Criminal Courts,’ Childhoods Today, 3(1)