9 ECTS credits
250 u studietijd

Aanbieding 1 met studiegidsnummer 4024078ENR voor alle studenten in het 1e semester met een verdiepend master niveau.

1e semester
Inschrijving onder examencontract
Niet mogelijk
Beoordeling (0 tot 20)
2e zittijd mogelijk
Onder samenwerkingsakkoord
Onder uitwisselingsakkoord mbt studiedelen
Faculteit Recht en Criminologie
Verantwoordelijke vakgroep
Mattias Lucien De Backer
Lucas De Melo Melgaço (titularis)
Onderdelen en contacturen
27 contacturen Hoorcollege
27 contacturen Werkcolleges, practica en oefeningen
240 contacturen Zelfstudie en externe werkvormen

Crime and the city introduces students in the large domain of urban criminology. The main goal of the course is to discuss how space matters to criminology. Space influences citizens’ lives, practices, experiences and emotions, at the same time that it is created and recreated on a daily basis by its inhabitants, commuters, users, and visitors. These processes will be studied in their relationship with crime, fear, disorder and urban conflicts. At a theoretical level, the profile builds on the subdomain of urban criminology, combining criminological, urban studies, social geographical theory and method.  


The first central theme of the course is fear. This concept will be critically discussed and decomposed in its different meanings and connections to the city, with particular attention to public space. Different aspects of fear will be treated: such as the relationship between fear and space; fear of the other (gender and ethnicity); labelling, representation, stigmatization of neighbourhoods; nightlife; the politics of fear; and the relationships between fear and securitization. 


The second central topic of the course is order. This topic will be explored through a multiplicity of subthemes that include public order, incivilities, nuisances, crime prevention, conflicts in public spaces; urban securitization; surveillance and control of public spaces; protests and the right to the city; and a critical analysis of environmental criminology and situational crime prevention. 


The third central topic is qualitative urban criminology methodologies. Through practices like city walks and photography, students learn how to conduct observation in public spaces. Moreover, the students are supported and stimulated to explore alternative qualitative urban criminology methodologies. 


The course uses key examples from the so-called Global North and with particular interest in examples from the so-called Global South (e.g. Brazil, Israel/Palestine, etc.) to open discussion on the case of Brussels. Crime and the City is offered to both students in the Master in Criminology and students in the Master in Urban Studies.   


Digitaal cursusmateriaal (Aanbevolen) :
Cursustekst (Aanbevolen) :
Bijkomende info



General Competences

Knowledge and insights:

  • Graduates have knowledge and understanding of the dynamics of the city and its relationship with crime, fear, order, securitization, and urban conflicts and can debate current issues related to these topics; 
  • Graduates have a more profound insight into the dynamics of public space with special attention to fear of crime and fear of ‘the other’ in an urban context;
  • Graduates are able to identify and critically discuss the main issues on fear of crime and order in the city of Brussels and are also able to compare them with other international cases; 
  • Graduates have knowledge and understanding of theoretical approaches to study the city and order, crime, urban conflicts, order, and deviant behaviour and transgression; 
  • Graduates can analyse and apply the knowledge and insights from urban criminology in the analysis of a concrete problem of (dis)order; 
  • Graduates can understand, judge and compare research on fear of crime, order, and the city in different international contexts; 
  • Graduates understand research methodology and methods to study the city and its relation with urban criminology. 


  • Graduates can independently include, process and discuss the complex reality of urban life in their analyses; 
  • Graduates can in groups describe and analyse policies regarding city, order, crime and fear of crime based on theoretical insights about the urban, including public space; 
  • Graduates can handle various sources of information (photo, film, etc.) in a scientific and creative manner to document fear and (dis)order in the city; 
  • Graduates can independently conduct a scientifically relevant international and national literature study on the city and its relationship to fear, order, crime, conflicts, deviant behaviour and transgression; 
  • Graduates can independently read, understand, and process scientific literature in English coming from both criminology, urban studies, and social geography; 
  • Graduates can produce a written material on the intersection between criminology, social geography, and urban studies; 
  • Graduates are able to think critically and discuss policies to tackle fear and disorder in an urban context; 
  • Graduates are able to orally express and defend their knowledge and insights in English. 


  • Graduates have a critical and sincere attitude, which demonstrates intellectual curiosity and intellectual honesty and a mind-set of lifelong learning; 
  • Graduates have a scientific interdisciplinary attitude with openness for different problem definitions and research methods; 
  • Graduates are respectful and ethical towards the external actors related to the course, such as respondents and guest speakers, particularly when it includes vulnerable populations;  
  • Graduates have a great interest in social, geographical and criminological subjects and an ethical-scientific attitude towards the course and their colleagues; 
  • Graduates can deal with the emotional aspects of the studied phenomena; 
  • Graduates are open-minded and free of prejudice. 



De beoordeling bestaat uit volgende opdrachtcategorieën:
Examen Mondeling bepaalt 30% van het eindcijfer

WPO Praktijkopdracht bepaalt 70% van het eindcijfer

Binnen de categorie Examen Mondeling dient men volgende opdrachten af te werken:

  • Examen Mondeling met een wegingsfactor 30 en aldus 30% van het totale eindcijfer.

Binnen de categorie WPO Praktijkopdracht dient men volgende opdrachten af te werken:

  • Praktijkopdracht met een wegingsfactor 70 en aldus 70% van het totale eindcijfer.

Aanvullende info mbt evaluatie


  • Oral exam (in English): 30%
  • Practical exercises: 70%


Students do not necessarily need to succeed the practical part of the evaluation to take part in the oral exam.


The practical exercises (70%) are composed by a 20% portfolio (individual), a 20% opinion piece (in duos), and a 30% group task. These percentages are subject to potential changes.


Students in the second session who have already entered any of these assignments in the first session keep the marks obtained in the first session in the second session. Any of these assignments, when not submitted in the first session, need to be submitted as part of the assessment in the second session. In this case, the opinion piece will be submitted individually, and the group task will be replaced by an individual paper.

Toegestane onvoldoende
Kijk in het aanvullend OER van je faculteit na of een toegestane onvoldoende mogelijk is voor dit opleidingsonderdeel.

Academische context

Deze aanbieding maakt deel uit van de volgende studieplannen:
Master in de criminologische wetenschappen: Standaard traject
Master of Urban Studies: Standard track (enkel aangeboden in het Engels)
Educatieve master in de maatschappijwetenschappen: criminologische wetenschappen (90 ECTS, Etterbeek)