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Press Release: Police Minister to open international conference on Crime Reduction and Criminal Justice in Johannesburg on 1 and 2 December 2011
30 November 2011




Gareth Newham / Chandre Gould
Crime and Justice Programme
Institute for Security Studies, Pretoria
Tel: +27 12 346 9500
Cell: +27 82 887 1557 / + 27 83 305 4915
Email: /

30 November 2011

Police Minister to open international conference on Crime Reduction and Criminal Justice in Johannesburg on 1 & 2 December 2011.

Police Minister, Nathi Mthethwa, will present the keynote address on 1 December at the second annual International Crime and Criminal Justice Conference taking place on Thursday and Friday this week. Hosted by the Institute for Security Studies (ISS), the conference will provide a forum for South African and international experts to discuss innovative approaches for understanding and reducing crime and to improve the functioning of the criminal justice system.


Although South Africa has exceptionally high crime levels, its problems are not unique and there is much that can be learned from other experiences. “Drawing upon international best-practices can prove invaluable for our own understanding of crime and possible new innovations in criminal justice. At the same time we have much to share from our experience and the lessons we have learnt over the years,” says Gareth Newham, head of the ISS Crime and Justice Programme (CJP).


A total of 29 presentations will be delivered and discussed over the two days. The presentations are arranged along various themes with day one exploring recent approaches towards understanding crime and it causes in different contexts and identifying innovative solutions. Highlights include a critique of South African criminology’s apparent failure to answer important questions about our high levels of violent crime, the findings of research the impact of factors such race, class and the experience of trauma on violent crime rates and innovations in address gang violence.


On Thursday afternoon the conference a panel of experienced researchers will explore the dynamics, ethics and challenges of conducting research in prisons amongst violent offenders such rapists. A second panel will consider pressing issues related to sentence reform and recidivism in South Africa.


On Friday, a panel of speakers will consider what can be done to better support victims of violent crime and how to prevent further offending of those released from prison. A second panel will assess criminal justice policy and practice in South Africa with a particular focus on the implementation of the Sexual Offences Act, and particular challenges with rape investigations.  A highlight will also be an assessment of the National Prosecuting Authority during 2010 and its future plans. 


The final panel will explore police corruption, integrity and accountability in South Africa. This will be facilitated by Mr. Newham, who will also talk about the recent Promote Professional Policing campaign launched by the ISS. “The campaign encourages civilians to recognise and support those police officers who do their work with honesty, dignity and respect and to report officers that are corrupt.” says Mr. Newham.

About the International Crime and Criminal Justice conference

Participation is free.


The conference is generously sponsored by the Hanns Seidel Foundation,the Rutgers School of Criminal Justice and the Open Society Foundation.


Sandton Sun Hotel, Johannesburg


Registration will be open at 08h00 on 1 December, and end after lunch on 2 December.

To register:

Click here or send an email with your name, surname, title and contact details to

Conference program:

Download the program by clicking here

Who should attend:

Media, criminologists, policy makers, criminal justice practitioners, members of civil society and academics.


Media enquiries:

About the ISS

The Institute for Security of Studies (ISS) is a pan-African organization that undertakes applied policy research, provides teaching and training as well as technical assistance.  The Institute is head quartered in Pretoria, South Africa with offices in Cape Town, South Africa, Nairobi, Kenya, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and Dakar, Senegal. The ISS works for the advancement of sustainable human security in Africa. It seeks to mainstream human security perspectives into public policy processes and to influence decision makers within Africa and beyond. The objective of the Institute is to add critical balance and objectivity by providing timely, empirical research, teaching and implementation support on sustainable human security issues to policy makers, area specialists, advocacy groups, and the media.

About the Crime and Justice Programme

The Crime and Justice Programme (CJP) aims to be the single most comprehensive source of information and analysis on crime, criminal justice and crime prevention in South Africa. Its purpose is to contribute towards, transparency, accountability, good governance and public awareness in relation to crime, its prevention and criminal justice.