Anthony Braga has spent nearly 25 years of his career working with the Boston Police Department to examine crime, gangs, and efforts to reduce violence in the city. Now, he is teaming up with the department again to study the current state of gang activity in Boston and the strategies being used to curtail gang-related crime.
Braga, a criminologist at Northeastern University, is leading a research project to identify the number of gang members in Boston, which neighborhoods they occupy, and the alliances and conflicts that have emerged between gangs in the city. He will use the data he collects to create computerized maps that show the prevalence of gangs in Boston’s neighborhoods. He will also analyze how effective police and community programs have been at reducing gang violence.
“It’s a terrific opportunity to take a fresh look at the nature of gang violence in Boston,” says Braga, a Distinguished Professor who directs the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Northeastern. “It’ll be very interesting to see how gang violence problems have evolved in the city, and how the Boston Police Department’s response to manage these gang violence problems has changed over time as well.”