L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs

L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs



Nancy A. Morris

Associate professor, Program Chair, Criminal Justice

Raleigh Building, Room 2009B Phone: (804) 827-0484 Email: nmorris@vcu.edu


  • Developmental criminology
  • Cross-national study of crime, violence and terrorism
  • Crime prevention and policing at places


B.A., Sociology, Virginia Tech

B.S., Political Science, Virginia Tech
M.S., Criminology and Criminal Justice, University of Maryland
Ph.D., Criminology and Criminal Justice, University of Maryland


Criminological theory, research methods, developmental criminology, cross-national crime and violence

Research interests

Continuity and change in antisocial and criminal offending over the life course (persistence and desistance from criminal offending), cross-national patterns of lethal violence (homicide and terrorism), spatial distribution of crime (crime at places over time)


Morris’ areas of research include the study of crime at places, developmental criminology and cross-national country-level violence. She was previously awarded a predoctoral fellowship with the National Consortium of Violence Research, has been a reviewer for peer-reviewed journals and funding agencies and has served on subcommittees for the American Society of Criminology. Her more recent published work has focused on identifying country-level patterns of terrorism over time and examining patterns and correlates of criminal offending among chronic offenders, with a focus on similarity among family members. She is a member of the American Society of Criminology, Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, American Sociological Association and American Psychological Association.

Selected publications

Kendler, K.S., Nancy A. Morris, Ohlsson, H., Lönn, S.L., Sundquist, J. and K. Sundquist. 2016. Criminal Offending and the Family Environment: A Swedish National High-Risk Home-Reared and Adopted-Away Co-Sibling Control Study. (Forthcoming, The British Journal of Psychiatry).

Nancy A. Morris. 2015. Target Suitability and Terrorism.Criminology and Public Policy13(3):451-97.

Kendler, K.S., Lönn, S.L., Maes, H., Nancy A. Morris,Lichtenstein, P., Sundquist, J. and K. Sundquist. 2015. A National Swedish Longitudinal Twin-Sibling Study of Criminal Convictions from Adolescence through Early Adulthood. Twin Research and Human Genetics18 (3):227-233.

Kendler, K.S., Maes, H., Lönn, S.L., Nancy A. Morris,Lichtenstein, P., Sundquist, J. and K. Sundquist. 2015. A Swedish National Twin Study of Criminal Behavior and its Violent, White-collar and Property Sub-types. Psychological Medicine, 45(11):2253-2262.

Kendler, K.S., Ohlsson, H., Nancy A. Morris, Sundquist, J. and Sundquist, K. 2014. A Swedish Population-Based Study of the Mechanisms of Parent-Offspring Transmission of Criminal Behavior. Psychological Medicine, 45(5):1093-1102.

Kendler, K.S., Nancy A. Morris., Lonn, S.L., Sundquist, J. and Sundquist, K. 2014. Environmental Transmission of Violent Criminal Behavior in Siblings: A Swedish National Study. Psychological Medicine, 44(15):3181-3187.

Kendler, K.S., Lönn, S.L, Nancy A. Morris, Sundquist, J., Långström, N. and Sundquist, K. 2014. A Swedish National Adoption Study of Criminality. Psychological Medicine44 (9):1913-1925.

LaFree, G. and Nancy A. Morris. 2012. Does Legitimacy Matter? Attitudes toward Anti-American Violence in Egypt, Morocco and Indonesia. Crime and Delinquency, 48(5):689-719.

Morris, Nancy A. and Slocum, L.A. 2012. Estimating Country-level Terrorism Trends using Group- based trajectory Analyses: Latent Class Growth Analysis and General Mixture Modeling. Journal of Quantitative Criminology, 28(1):103-139.

Stepp, S., Pardini, D.A., Loeber, R. and Nancy A. Morris.2011. The Relation between Adolescent Social Competence and Young Adult Delinquency and Educational Attainment among At-risk Youth: The Mediating Role of Peer Delinquency. Canadian Journal of Psychiatry56(8):457-65.

Morris, Nancy A. and Slocum, L.A. 2010. The Validity of Self-reported Prevalence, Frequency, and Timing of Arrest: An Evaluation of Data Collected Using a Life Event Calendar.Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency, 47(2):210-240.

LaFree, G., Nancy A. Morris and Dugan, L. 2010. Cross-National Patterns of Terrorism: Comparing Trajectories for Total, Attributed and Fatal Attacks, 1970–2006. British Journal of Criminology50(4): 622-649.

Weisburd, D., Nancy A. Morris and Groff, E. 2009. Hot Spots of Juvenile Crime: A Longitudinal Study of Arrest Incidents at Street Segments in Seattle, WashingtonJournal of Quantitative Criminology, 25(4): 443-467.

Weisburd, D., Nancy A. Morris and Ready, J. 2008. Risk Focused Policing at Places: An Experimental Evaluation.Justice Quarterly, 25(1):163-200.