Dr Emma Buxton-Namisnyk, from UNSW Law & Justice, has been awarded the Radzinowicz Memorial Prize for her article 'Domestic Violence Policing of First Nations Women in Australia: ‘Settler’ Frameworks, Consequential Harms and the Promise of Meaningful Self-Determination'

Dr Buxton-Namisnyk’s winning article analyses First Nations women’s service contact histories preceding fatal domestic violence episodes across over ten years of cases, alongside interviews with First Nations domestic violence workers, violence survivors and Elders.

The article highlights that most First Nations women had domestic violence-related police contact before their deaths, and these interactions were frequently harmful. Harms resulted from police inaction, including police failures to respond or enforce the law, but also police action, such as when officers responded paternalistically or criminalised victims of violence.

It is Dr Buxton-Namisnyk’s hope that receiving this award will amplify the impact of her research, which urges meaningful recognition of Indigenous peoples’ right to self-determination in effective responses to domestic violence. 

“It is such an honour to receive this award, especially as an early career researcher. I am so grateful to all those who participated in this research and whose guidance and assistance shaped its design, the research process and the final findings, especially First Nations collaborators and stakeholders” Dr Buxton-Namisnyk said.

The Radzinowicz Prize, named in honour of criminologist Sir Leon Radzinowicz is awarded annually by the British Journal of Criminology to the article that most contributes to knowledge of criminal justice issues and the development of criminology. The prize is one of the most prestigious awards in criminology globally.

UNSW Dean of Law & Justice Professor Andrew Lynch congratulated Dr Buxton-Namisnyk on receiving such a prestigious award.

“It is fantastic that Dr Buxton-Namisnyk’s important work has been recognised internationally. This award is a major success for the criminology & criminal justice program, the faculty and wider university,” Prof. Lynch said.