Dr Evelyn Svingen

Dr Evelyn Svingen

Department of Social Policy, Sociology and Criminology
Assistant Professor in Criminology

Contact details

School of Social Policy
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Dr Evelyn Svingen is an Assistant Professor in Criminology with an interest in the biosocial mechanisms of etiology of crime. Her main research area is within the fields of evolutionary psychology and behavioural economics, in which she uses game theory experiments in order to explain how people cooperate as a group and how it might lead to criminal behaviours. 

She is also interested in criminological theory and the debates surrounding the future of criminological enquiry.



  • PhD in Criminology, University of Cambridge, 2021
  • MPhil in Criminological Research, University of Cambridge, 2017
  • BA in Liberal Arts and Sciences, University College Maastricht, 2016


Dr Evelyn Svingen received her BA (cum laude) in Liberal Arts and Sciences from the University College Maastricht in the Netherlands, where she combined her interests in neuroscience and political philosophy. She then received her MPhil (distinction) in Criminological Research and PhD in Criminology from the University of Cambridge, where she developed and tested the Retribution and Reciprocity Model of crime, informed by neurophysiology, evolutionary psychology, and game theory. 

Evelyn taught on the Working Together project in HMP Grendon as well as many undergraduate and master level classes, before becoming a lecturer in Forensic Psychology at Pembroke College (Cambridge) summer programme. 

After her PhD, she began working at Cambridge University Press & Assessment within the Research division, where she conducted her research into educational assessment, digital divide, and the issues of equality and diversity. 

She also designed and led her summer course in Forensic Psychology at Pembroke College, Cambridge.


Evelyn teaches on a variety of modules in Criminology, including courses on Criminological Theory, Punishment, Social Harm, and Biosocial mechanisms of crime.

Postgraduate supervision

Evelyn will welcome applications from potential research students interested in (but not limited to):

  • Theories of crime
  • Biosocial criminology
  • Mental illness and crime
  • Forensic psychology
  • Quantitative research methods


Evelyn is currently researching the Retribution and Reciprocity Model, a theory based in Evolutionary Criminology. She is also involved in the epistemological debates around criminological theory and how we can improve our mechanisms of explaining the etiology of crime. 

Additionally, she has an interest in neuroscience, brain development, and mental illness and is also involved in Higher Education research.


Crime, causes of crime, youth crime, neuroscience of antisocial behaviour, interdisciplinary teaching and learning, mental health

Media experience