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Personal profile


Prof. Rachel Armitage is a Professor of Criminology within the School of Human and Health Sciences. She founded the highly successful multi-disciplinary institute - The Secure Societies Institute (SSI), which she directed between 2014 and 2018. 


Prof. Armitage’s research focuses upon the role of design (place, space, products and systems) in influencing both anti-social and pro-social behaviour. She has conducted research on the subject of Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED) for over 20 years -  evaluating the effectiveness of the Secured by Design (SBD) award scheme, investigating the links between housing design and crime risk, exploring the tensions and synergies between security and sustainability and studying international approaches to preventing crime through design. Her work has been referenced in local, national and international planning policy and guidance, and she aims to ensure that consideration for crime prevention is on the agenda of all agencies involved in planning and developing the built environment. More recently, she has conducted several projects exploring the role of design in counterterrorism at critical infrastructure sites, in particular, multi-modal passenger terminals.


Rachel is currently working closely with major supermarket chains (in the UK) and local police forces to establish the extent to which design changes can impact upon shoplifters’ perceptions of risk. She hopes to use these findings to influence supermarkets to make design changes across the UK.


Rachel has published extensively on the subject of designing out crime, including a sole authored book: Crime Prevention through Housing Design (2013) published by Palgrave Macmillan. She is on the Editorial Board of several journals including: Security Journal (Book Reviews Editor), the European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research, Crime Prevention and Community Safety and Frontiers in Psychology, Forensic and Legal Psychology.

Research Expertise and Interests

  • Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED).
  • The role of design (place, space, products, systems) in influencing anti-social and pro-social behaviour.
  • Designing out Crime/Designing in Wellbeing.
  • The role of design in counter-terrorism.
  • The public engagement video Designing out Crime: Building Safer Communities, on the subject of designing out crime, demonstrates the concepts and also the effectiveness of this crime reduction measure.

Research Degree Supervision

Click Here to see all postgraduate research opportunities with Professor Rachel Armitage


  • Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED)
  • Designing out Crime and anti-social behaviour
  • Designing in pro-social behaviour and wellbeing
  • The role of design in counter-terrorism

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

  • 6 Similar Profiles
crime prevention Social Sciences
offense Social Sciences
environmental design Social Sciences
housing Social Sciences
police Social Sciences
sustainability Social Sciences
offender Social Sciences
surveillance Social Sciences

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Projects 2015 2016

Systematic review of the effectiveness of Secured by Design as a form of crime reduction

Armitage, R. & Sidebottom, A.


Project: ResearchUK Government

Research Output 1999 2019

Traffic Accidents
Mental Health
Process Assessment (Health Care)

Rebuilding Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design: Strengthening the Links with Crime Science

Armitage, R. (ed.) & Ekblom, P. (ed.), 21 Feb 2019, 1st ed. London: Routledge Taylor & Francis Group. 266 p. (Crime Science Series )

Research output: Book/ReportBook

environmental design
crime prevention
technical language
Open Access
environmental design
crime prevention

Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design

Armitage, R., 26 Apr 2018, Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Criminology and Criminal Justice. Oxford University Press

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingEntry for encyclopedia/dictionary

environmental design
crime prevention

Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED) and retail crime: Exploring offender perspectives on risk and protective factors in the design and layout of retail environments

Armitage, R., Joyce, C. & Monchuk, L., Jul 2018, Retail Crime: International Evidence and Prevention. Ceccato, V. & Armitage, R. (eds.). UK: Palgrave Macmillan Ltd., p. 123-154 32 p. (Crime Prevention and Security Management).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

environmental design
crime prevention

Activities 2001 2019

China Academy of Safety Science and Technology (External organisation)

Rachel Armitage (Chair)
22 Jan 2019 → …

Activity: Membership typesMembership of a Society or Institute

Policing: a Journal of Policy and Practice (Journal)

Rachel Armitage (Reviewer)
1 Mar 2019

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial work

External Examiner PhD

Rachel Armitage (Examiner)
1 Oct 2018

Activity: Examination typesPhD Examination

University of Cambridge (External organisation)

Rachel Armitage (Chair)
31 Jan 2018 → …

Activity: Membership typesMembership of a panel

The Police Journal (Journal)

Rachel Armitage (Reviewer)
1 Jan 2018 → …

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial work