FSU Criminology Professor, Dr. Alex Piquero, Wins 2011 Academic Fellow Award from the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS)

January 25, 2011

Filed Under: Awards, Faculty, Research

By Libby Fairhurst, January 2011

Florida State’s Program Leads Field in Faculty Productivity, External Funding and more

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Renowned criminologist Alex Piquero of Florida State University has won the 2011 Academy Fellow Award from the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS), and it’s no wonder. The expert on criminal careers and crime prevention is ranked No. 1
nationally both for scholarly productivity and scholarly impact in his field.

“Because the Academy Fellow Award recognizes distinguished contributions to criminal justice education and scholarship, it is hard to imagine a recipient more deserving than Professor Alex Piquero,” said Thomas G. Blomberg, dean of the Florida State University College of Criminology and Criminal Justice.

“His teaching, research and service to the criminological profession are truly exceptional, and his record of successful research and publication collaborations with students and colleagues alike make him an outstanding role model,” Blomberg said. “For these reasons and more Alex has earned this high honor from one of our discipline’s two leading professional societies.”

Piquero’s No. 1 rankings appear in a study published in a recent, special issue of the Journal of Criminal Justice Education that examines the performances of U.S. criminology programs and faculty.

The productivity rating is based on the number of articles for which he served as the sole or lead author that were published between 2000 and 2009 in the eight leading criminology and criminal justice journals. His impact rating is derived from the number of times — more than 5,000 so far – that other scholars have cited his research in their own published work. And they’ve had plenty of material to cite. In the 15 years since he earned his Ph.D. in 1996, more than 200 articles
authored or coauthored by Piquero have landed in his discipline’s major journals.

His achievements reflect the caliber of criminology’s intellectual community at Florida State.

A cadre of nationally prominent faculty — many of them still relatively young — now has propelled the College of Criminology and Criminal Justice to its own set of No. 1 rankings. Other recent studies also appearing in the Journal of Criminal Justice Education show that the Florida State program leads its national counterparts in no less than three key measures:

  • Overall faculty productivity
  • The acquisition of external funding
  • The number of published journal articles by recent doctoral graduates.

“Clearly we have recruited a stellar faculty, which accounts for the recent confirmation of our college as the finest criminology program in the country,” Blomberg said.

In fact, the scholarly productivity study that ranks Piquero No. 1 lists Florida State criminology Professor Daniel P. Mears in the No. 2 spot. Several other highly productive and increasingly well known Florida State criminologists, including associate professors Kevin M. Beaver and Carter Hay, can be found among the Top 15 and Top 25, respectively. Another study in the same Journal of Criminal Justice Education issue ranks FSU Associate Professor Nicole Piquero
among the nation’s leading female criminologists. And Blomberg notes that even rankings as significant as these present only a partial picture of his college’s eminent faculty, cutting-edge research and leadership on the public policy front.

The Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences will formally recognize Piquero as the 2011 Academy Scholar at its next annual meeting, scheduled for March 1-5 in Toronto.

“I am deeply honored and humbled by this recognition,” Piquero said. “I owe it in large part to the unmatched intellectual environment, collegiality and support that enables my Florida State criminology colleagues, students and I to thrive as we do. As a professor, I couldn’t ask for anything more rewarding than teaching students, sharing my excitement for criminological issues with them, seeing them continue their education and become academics and policymakers, and
then knowing that they in turn are mentoring their students and collaborating with colleagues.”

So far, Piquero has more than 20 articles slated for journal publication in 2011. The Michael Vick case is the focus of one forthcoming paper (coauthored with FSU criminologists Marc Gertz and Nicole Piquero and two graduate students); another paper (coauthored with Nicole Piquero) examines the potential cost of identity theft prevention.

In the next few years, Piquero plans to focus on research that sheds light on the reasons individuals engage in crime — and why some of them continue while some of them stop.

“Understanding the ‘why’ behind what people do is integral and necessary before we can develop and implement public policies that are cost-effective and beneficial to all,” he said.

Piquero is Florida State University’s Gordon P. Waldo Professor of Criminology. He also serves as co-editor of the Journal of Quantitative Criminology. In addition, he holds the position of adjunct
professor in the Key Centre for Ethics, Law, Justice, and Governance at Australia’s Griffith University.

Among his previous honors are the American Society of Criminology’s Young Scholar and E-Mail Mentor of the Year recognitions. Throughout his career he also has received numerous teaching
awards. His articles have appeared in the most prestigious journals in criminology, psychology, sociology and public health; and Cambridge University Press has published his coauthored book, “Key Issues in Criminal Careers Research: New Analyses from the Cambridge Study in
Delinquent Development.” He has given testimony before the U.S. Congress on evidence-based crime prevention practices in the area of early-family/parent training programs, and has provided counsel and support to several local, state, national and international criminal justice agencies, including those in the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Sweden and Australia.

A member of more than a dozen editorial boards of journals in criminology and sociology, Piquero also has served as an Executive Counselor with the American Society of Criminology; on the National Academy of Sciences panel evaluating the National Institute of Justice; and as a member of the MacArthur Foundation’s Research Network on Adolescent Development and Juvenile Justice.

Bringing research to life in order to inform and drive effective public policy is the mission of Florida State University’s top-ranked College of Criminology and Criminal Justice, whose faculty has been judged second to none. To learn more about the college’s research and its leading role in efforts to reduce the economic and human costs of crime, go to