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Specializes in police and crime control, firearms and violence, and program evaluation

Dr. Anthony A. Braga is a professor in the School of Criminal Justice at Rutgers University in Newark and a senior research fellow in the Program in Criminal Justice Policy and Management at Harvard Kennedy School. He is also a member of the University of Chicago Crime Lab and a senior fellow in the Berkeley Center for Criminal Justice at the University of California, Berkeley. He is currently the vice president and an elected fellow of the Academy of Experimental Criminology.

Braga’s research involves collaborating with criminal justice, social service, and community-based organizations to address illegal access to firearms, reduce gang and group-involved violence, and control crime hot spots. Since 1995, Braga has worked closely with criminal justice practitioners in Boston to reduce youth gun violence. He was a member of the Boston Gun Project working group that implemented the well-known Operation Ceasefire gang violence reduction strategy that was associated with a 63 percent reduction in youth homicides in Boston during the mid to late 1990s. Since 2007, Braga has served as the chief policy advisor to Commissioner Edward F. Davis of the Boston Police Department. In this role Braga has worked with Boston Police command staff and officers to implement the Compstat management accountability system, reinvigorate the Operation Ceasefire strategy, and develop the Safe Street Team program, which uses community problem solving techniques to control violent crime hot spots.

Braga has served as a consultant on controlling and preventing violent crime problems to many federal, state, and local criminal justice agencies including the U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Department of the Treasury, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, Massachusetts Executive Office of Public Safety and Security, and various police departments.

Braga’s work on controlling and preventing violent crime has received numerous awards. Most recently, he was a recipient of the United States Attorney General’s Award for Outstanding Contributions to Community Partnerships for Public Safety (2009) and the U.S. Department of Justice Project Safe Neighborhoods' Distinguished Service by a Research Partner Award (2010). He has also received several certificates of distinction from the Derek Bok Center for Learning and Teaching for his prior classes offered at Harvard and teaches in the Police Executive Research Forum’s Senior Management Institute for Police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s National Executives Institute.

A prolific writer, Braga’s work has been published in top criminology and criminal justice journals such as Criminology, Journal of Quantitative Criminology, Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency, and Criminology & Public Policy. With colleagues, he has authored and edited several books such as Policing Problem Places: Crime Hot Spots and Effective Prevention (Oxford University Press, 2010), Problem-Oriented Policing and Crime Prevention (Criminal Justice Press, 2008), Legitimacy and Criminal Justice: A Comparative Perspective (Russell Sage Foundation Press, 2007), and Police Innovation: Contrasting Perspectives (Cambridge University Press, 2006).

Braga received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Massachusetts, his master of public administration from Harvard University, and his doctoral degree in criminal justice from Rutgers University in Newark.