You are required to select one of these options, write a short theory paper and prepare 3 to 5 minutes presentation on the topic [Be a Theorist or a Policy Maker] (I will create the short presentation…)

a) Be a Theorist

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Read couple of original studies to understand any given theory proposed by a specific scholar (e.g., Merton on Strain, Durkheim on Anomie, Sutherland on Social Disorganization, etc.). Then apply that same theoretical framework studying a specific international/transnational type of crime. So be a theorist and answer questions about current events in specific countries or regions through the lenses of the theoretical framework you selected:

Examples of current events (you can be more specific in your title or select a different transcrime/region):

War crimes in South Sudan or Syria

Gang crime in Central America

Drug Trafficking in Mexico

Environmental Crime in South Africa

Organized crime in Netherlands

Acquisitive crimes in Eastern Europe

Organized crime in Russia

Human trafficking/illegal immigration in Mexico

Gang violence in El Salvador

Crimes against Humanity in Libya

Examples of theories:

Social Networks/Social Opportunity Theory; Social Disorganization; Anomie; Structural Strain; Social Control; Learning Theory; Institutional Anomie Theory; Criminogenic Asymmetries; Opportunity Theories; Rational Choice; Neutralization Techniques (Drift); Labeling Theory; Conflict Theory, etc.

The paper should be approximately 1,000-1,300 words(additional pages for references). Deadlines must be met and late submissions will not be allowed. 3% of the grade will be reduced for each day late. You should present your main findings in approximately 5 minutes. You should prepare power point presentation (5-10 slides).

The paper and presentation should include the following elements:

Discussion of the issue/problem and brief background info

Inclusion of two to three specific questions about current events linked to the general topic

Brief summary of the specific theory selected

Description/summary of the findings from a specific theoretical perspective (link events/developments to theory)

Policy recommendations/implications from a specific theoretical perspective

The idea is to answer questions about current events from a very specific theoretical perspective (one theory, one scholar; be as specific as you can). Be a theorist (select one theorist) and try to answer questions about current events from one (given) perspective.You need to illustrate that you have a very good understanding of the theory and its underlining principles and that you can link the theory to current issues/problems and solutions. In this assignment, you can refer to some specific research and findings but you can also be creative (critical thinking) and bring your own conclusions (as long as they are logical and in line with the theory).

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