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Beyond the Barriers Initiative Research

Beyond the Barriers strives to foster, support and advance the body of science of mass incarceration and decarceration as connected to our mission. We encourage and support undergraduate, graduate and faculty research committed to challenging the California’s overinvestment in prison building that requires a critical theoretical and research frame that includes and extends beyond traditional quantitative and qualitative methodologies. 

We seek to identify, understand and address the root causes of mass incarceration with focused and specific attention the historical, political, economic and cultural structures involved in this issue and make this scholarship widely available. 

Our objectives are to:

  • Promote scholarship that questions the continued reliance on imprisonment or policing as a response to social problems. 
  • Create and foster dialogue between undergraduate, graduate and faculty and communities about imprisonment and sustainable alternatives.
  • Encourage campus community to think critically about the impacts of carceral punishment and regimes of surveillance on culture, politics, media and scholarship
  • Convene scholars and community organizers working towards alternative solutions to incarceration to jointly create scholarship and apply research to organizing and policy changes.
  • Increase scholarly publications and presentations of undergraduate and graduate students research through white papers, policy briefs, conference proceedings as well as artistic productions and representations in additions to more traditional refereed articles and monographs. Our scholarly research will contribute to UC Davis overall prestige and impact.  

Research is supported through awards and fellowships administered by the Undergraduate Research Center. Discover funding opportunities