The Stockholm Prize in Criminology for 2017 has been awarded to Prof. Richard Tremblay. Stockholm University called Tremblay “the leading scholar in the world in developing basic science connections between biological, family and social factors in human development, and who combines this research with rigorous tests of policies that may alter these factors to reduce crime and violence.” The prize reflects his “lifetime of pioneering work, reflected in over 500 publications, that began in Montreal in the 1980s and continues today in Paris and Dublin with new research testing pre-natal crime prevention with at-risk mothers.”
The jury that awarded the prize noted his success in drawing connections across many different scientific disciplines, as well as philosophy, and in embedding basic science into applied criminology testing public policies for crime prevention. Among findings of his research: The peak age for violent behavior is not age 20, but age three; the predictors of early and persistent violence can be changed rather than accepted as inevitable; the predictors cannot be ignored, as demonstrated by the increased risk of violence among Montreal children who went to preschool at age 4 after suffering traumas at birth, compared to children with similar traumas who did not attend preschool. Using the same predictors to select children for intensive support at age 7 to 9 resulted in a 34 percent reduction in criminal records by age 24, compared to highly aggressive children who were not selected for an intensive program. Tremblay is Emeritus Professor of Pediatrics, Psychiatry and Psychology at the University of Montreal.