Belinda is a Professor in Forensic Psychology and Heads the Sexual Offences, Crime and Misconduct Research Unit at Nottingham Trent University. She supervises a number of PhD students, primarily in forensic areas (e.g. internet sex offenders and collecting behaviour, short sentenced offenders and desistance, the risk assessment of intellectually disabled sex offenders, reducing sexual preoccupation in convicted sex offenders, evaluating Circles of Support and Accountability with sex offenders, understanding attraction to fire and motivation of individuals committing arson), as well as a number of DPsych students.
Belinda has been a Course Leader and Associate Course Leader for undergraduate courses (BPS accredited degrees in Psychology with Criminology, Psychology with Sociology and Psychology with Sports Science), and postgraduate courses (BPS accredited MSc Forensic Psychology) and the DPsych (Forensic) at NTU. Previously, Belinda has worked at St Mary’s Hospital, UCL, Imperial College and the University of Sheffield.
Belinda is Head of the Sexual Offences, Crime and Misconduct Research Unit (SOCAMRU). She set SOCAMRU up in 2007 to build upon the collaborative relationship between ongoing research within the Psychology Division at NTU and HMP Whatton (one of the largest sex offender prisons in Europe, holding approximately 830 convicted male sex offenders).
The unit's primary aim is to conduct and facilitate applied forensic research in the area of sex offending and sexual crime, with the research unit sitting at the juxtaposition between the world of prison and that of academia.
Current research programmes include mixed method evaluations of anti-libidinal medication, pre-treatment initiatives such as Good Vibrations, prison-based Circles of Support and Accountability and therapists climates of prisons. The team are also conducting research exploring religiosity and sexual offenders, peer support programmes, the collecting of sexually explicit materials, personality disorders in sex offenders, challenges for/with transgender prisoners and the underpinnings of denial in sexual crime.
The Safer Living Foundation
Belinda is a co-founder, trustee, Vice Chair and Head of Research and Evaluation for the Safer Living Foundation, a charity set up in 2014 to conduct (and evaluate) initiatives that help to prevent further victims of sexual crime. The charity is running prison-based Circles of Support and Accountability (CoSA), starting from within HMP Whatton where the circle follows the offender out into the community when they are released to help the offenders cope better with the transition from prison to community. We are also running community-based CoSA (Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire) and are currently scoping out CoSA for young people with sexually harmful behaviour.
Our second project is commencing a prevention initiative similar to Dunkelfeld, but a UK version, working within our different reporting requirements.
Further projects currently being undertaken by the SLF include researching child sexual exploitation, helping institutionalised offenders through the sometimes difficult transition from prison to community, as well as setting up accommodation for sex offenders released from custody who would benefit from a 'three quarters' way house in the community.
Sponsors and collaborators
- HMP Whatton
- HMP Lowdham Grange
- HMP Nottingham
- Rampton High Secure Hospital
- Nottinghamshire Police, East Midlands Probation and MAPPA
- Safer Living Foundation
- National Offender Management Service
- Ministry of Justice
- Child sex offences
- Online grooming
- Psychology of religion
- Sexual preoccupation and addiction
- Non-contact sexual offences
- Antilibidinal medication / medication to manage sexual arousal
- Sexual homicide
- Indecent exposure
- Hypersexuality and hypersexual disorder
- Circles of Support and Accountability
- Young people demonstrating sexually harmful behaviour
- Juvenile sex offenders
- Prisons and prisoners
- Prevention of sexual offending
- Virtuous Paedophiles
- Internet sex offenders
- Offenders and mental health
- Offending and health
- Resettlement of offenders
- Sex offenders
- Sexual crime
- Forensic psychology