Thiago R. Oliveira

Welcome to my website! I am currently based at the University of Oxford, where I work as a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Centre for Social Investigation and a Research Fellow at Nuffield College. I have a PhD from the London School of Economics and Political Science. Starting August 2022, I will be a Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in Criminology at the University of Surrey.

I am a quantitative criminologist – a sociologist by training and a fake statistician at heart, I am a social scientist interested in studying the consequences of police misconduct and aggressive policing strategies, particularly in terms of people’s relationship with the law and the legal institutions. Overall, I use survey data to investigate the extent to which people lose faith in legal authority when they are repeatedly exposed to police brutality and injustice, especially in high-crime contexts in Latin America, and I am particularly motivated to explore the degree to which this relationship is causal. Topics in which I am particularly interested include the legitimacy of the law and the legal institutions, overpolicing and underpolicing, procedural justice theory and legal cynicism, police-citizen encounters and aggressive policing strategies, legal socialisation, exposure to (neighbourhood and police) violence, neighbourhood effects, and criminal justice policy. For my doctoral research supervised by Jonathan Jackson at LSE, I used longitudinal survey data to study the relationship between perceived police conduct and attitudinal change. I have good familiarity with quantitative research methods, especially longitudinal data analysis, causal inference with observational data, measurement, multilevel modelling, spatial data models, and R programming. My work has appeared in venues such as the Journal of Quantitative Criminology and Law & Society Review.

As a Brazilian native, most of my work is focused on big cities in Latin American – such as the city of São Paulo. Some of my current projects include assessing the consequences of police stops at gunpoint, which are surprisingly frequent in São Paulo, and the twin harms of intrusive excess and malign neglect which characterise policing in most Brazilian cities. In previous work I assessed the role of fear and violence in police-citizen relations in São Paulo, as well as discussed the generalisability of procedural justice theory in this context (e.g., here, here, and here).

At the University of Oxford, I am working with David Kirk on a project focused on gun violence in the United States. Drawing on cohort data from the Project on Human Development in Chicago Neighborhoods, including a new fifth wave being collected in 2021, we are investigating some long-term consequences of exposure to police brutality and gun violence during the life course, as well as the reciprocal relationship between police brutality and gun proliferation in Chicago.

Find more about me and my research. On this website, you can also find my up-to-date CV, some research I am currently working on, and a list of my published papers. You can also find a list of papers I published in Portuguese.

Feel free to contact me!