Steve Herbert is Mark Torrance Professor of Law, Societies, and Justice.
Professor Herbert is trained as a geographer (PhD, UCLA 1995), and has focused much of his research energy on exploring the relationship between the exercise of power and the control of space, particularly with respect to the work of urban police departments. He has conducted extensive ethnographic fieldwork with the Los Angeles and the Seattle Police Departments. This work resulted in three books: Policing Space: Territoriality and the Los Angeles Police Department (University of Minnesota Press, 1997); Citizens, Cops, and Power: Recognizing the Limits to Community (University of Chicago Press, 2005); and (with Katherine Beckett) Banished: The New Social Control in Urban America (Oxford University Press, 2009). He has also published articles in leading journals in the disciplines of Geography, Socio-Legal Studies, and Criminology.
Professor Herbert’s most recent work focuses on the realities of life-sentenced prisoners. He is the author of Too Easy to Keep: Life-Sentenced Prisoners and the Future of Mass Incarceration (University of California Press, 2019). This research was inspired by his prison-based educational efforts. These include the “mixed enrollment” courses at the Washington State Reformatory, which combine LSJ students and incarcerated students in the same classroom. These efforts also include three “mixed enrollment” book clubs that he runs at other prisons in Monroe.
He is also the creator of the 2021 podcast series, “Making Amends”, which tells the story of six men incarcerated at the Oregon State Penitentiary who are eager to find ways to atone for their past mistakes.
Professor Herbert teaches the following courses: LSJ 200, “Introduction to Law, Societies, and Justice”; LSJ 377, “Punishment: Theory and Practice”; and LSJ 490, “Juvenile Parole Project”. He was honored with the UW Distinguished Teaching Award in 2009.
- Steve Herbert. 2014. "Fear and Loathing in the San Juan Islands: Endangered Orcas and the Legitimacy of Environmental Law," Environment and Planning A, 46(8), 1781-1796.
- Too Easy to Keep: Life-Sentenced Prisoners and the Future of Mass Incarceration (University of California Press)
- Steve Herbert, Katherine Beckett, and Forrest Stuart. 2017. “Policing Social Marginality: Contrasting Approaches.” Law and Social Inquiry 43, 4: 1491-1513. Download PDF
- Steve Herbert. 2014. “The Policing of Space: New Realities, Old Dilemmas,” in Oxford Handbook of Police and Policing, edited by Michael Reisig and Robert Kane (Oxford: Oxford University Press).
- Steve Herbert. 2014. “Dis/Order and the Regulation of Urban Space,” [with Tiffany Grobelski] in Cities and Social Change, edited by Ronan Paddison and Eugene McCann (London: Sage Publications).
- Steve Herbert. 2013 “The Regulation of Environmental Space". Annual Review of Law and Social Science. Vol. 9, 227-247 [with Brandon Derman and Tiffany Grobelski].
- Katherine Beckett and Steve Herbert. 2010. Banished: The New Social Control in Urban America. Oxford University Press. Published in the Crime and Public Policy Series.
- Leslie, Sarah. "A New Leash on Life: Benefits of Dog Training Programs in Prisons". Law, Societies, and Justice Honors Report, 2021.
- "Keeping Kids Out of the System: An Examination and Analysis". Law, Societies, and Justice Group Honors Report, 2017.
- "Guilty but Innocent: Juveniles in Jail in Washington State". Law, Societies, and Justice Group Honors Report.
- LSJ 490 D: Special Topics in Comparative Legal Institutions
- LSJ 495 A: Study Abroad-Law, Societies, and Justice
- LSJ 200 A: Introduction to Law, Societies, and Justice
- LSJ 490 A: Special Topics in Comparative Legal Institutions