Harry Annison is a Professor in Criminal Justice at Southampton Law School.
His expertise and knowledge spans law, politics and criminology. His areas of interest include penal policy, the politics of crime control and he has a sustained interest in the practical and theoretical issues relating to ‘dangerous offenders’ and indeterminate sentencing. Professor Annison is an experienced empirical researcher, with much of his work underpinned by qualitative research conducted with a range of groups including: people affected by imprisonment; criminal justice practitioners; and national-level policymakers.
- Penal politics
- Probation and parole
- Narratives, storylines and penal policy
Harry is currently a co-investigator on a major ESRC-funded project 'Rehabilitating Probation: Rebuilding culture, identity and legitimacy in a reformed public service', 2022-2025.
The aims of the research are to examine the implementation of a significant programme of public service reform which will bring formerly outsourced probation services back into the public sector. The study aims to understand experiences and consequences of reform at local, regional and national levels and from a variety of perspectives, including: probation staff; senior managers; policy makers; service users; and external stakeholders. The research explores the impact of reform on the roles, identities and cultures of probation workers and observe how a newly reconfigured probation service seeks to (re-) build legitimacy with its external partners.
Harry is also researching, reflecting and writing on the politics of parole in England and Wales.
Harry's teaching centres upon his research expertise in criminal justice and the sociology of punishment. In recent years, he has therefore taught modules including Penal Policy (which explores explanations for changes in the rate and nature of imprisonment in recent decades, across different nations), Criminal Justice, and Criminal Law.
External roles and responsibilities
Harry Annison is a member of the Howard League for Penal Reform Research Advisory Group. He has collaborated with leading charities including the Prison Reform Trust ('Locked In?', 2023) and JUSTICE ('A Parole System Fit for Purpose', 2022). He is Book Review Editor for Punishment & Society.