Victimology is the study of why certain people are victims of crime and how lifestyles affect the chances that a certain person will fall victim to a crime. The field of victimology can cover a wide number of disciplines, including sociology, psychology, criminal justice, law and advocacy.
One particularly well known example of a class at increased risk to varying forms of attacks is the "streetwalker" prostitute. These people have been known anecdotally to have an abnormally high incidence of violent crime, and for said crimes to go unresolved frequently. Victimological studies of the matter might investigate current societal mores (expectations, roles, social status), legal status of prostitutes, typical working/living conditions, statistical analysis of the actual increased risk and secondary risk factors, and the economic activity of streetwalkers.
The study of victims is multidisciplinary. It does not just cover victims of crime, but also victims of (traffic) accidents, natural disasters, war crimes and abuse of power. The professionals involved in victimology may be scientists, practitioners and policy makers. Studying victims can be done from the perspective of the individual victim but also from an epidemiological point of view.
- American Society of Victimology
- International Victimology Institute Tilburg
- International Victimology Website
- Tokiwa International Victimology Institute
- World Society of Victimology
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