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Unit information: Inequality, Harm and Public Policy in 2021/22

Unit name Inequality, Harm and Public Policy
Unit code SPOL30061
Credit points 20
Level of study H/6
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Dr. Klantschnig
Open unit status Not open




School/department School for Policy Studies
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences and Law

Description including Unit Aims

This unit addresses the relationship between state, society and the production of crime and harm. The unit is concerned with understanding how crime and social harms can be understood as products of the ways different societies are organised. It focuses on the role and impact of the inequality to address a key question of whether unequal societies produce higher levels of crime and social harm than more egalitarian societies. From this, further questions are raised about specific processes, policies and interventions which make crime and social harms less likely to occur in more egalitarian societies. Public policy interventions towards a crime and harm-free society are thus explored.

Intended Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete this unit will be able to:

1.demonstrate a sophisticated understadning of how crime and social harms can be produced through the different ways societies are organised

2. use and interpret the empirical evidence and synthesise the theoretical debates on the relationship between inequality and crime and social harm

3. critically evaluate how crime and social harm can be reduced through public policy interventions in different country contexts.

Teaching Information

Teaching will be delivered through blended learning involving a combination of synchronous and asynchronous sessions, including weekly lectures, practical activities supported by study-group sessions and self-directed exercises.

Assessment Information

Part 1: Critical reading (1000 words) (25%)

Part 2: Essay (2000 words) (75%)


If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. SPOL30061).

How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.