Professor of Criminology, Law and Society and Urban Planning and Public Policy
Ph.D., Carnegie Mellon University
2307 Social Ecology II
Criminology, Law and Society
criminology, community context of violence, urban youth gangs, homicide studies
George Tita is a Professor in the Department of Criminology, Law and Society at the University of California – Irvine. His education includes a BA from the University of Pittsburgh (1986), a Master’s of Science in Economic Development (1993) and Ph.D. (1999) from the H.J. Heinz III School of Public Policy and Management at Carnegie Mellon. His interests include the study of inter-personal violence with a focus of homicide, urban street gangs, and the community context of crime. His methodological toolkit includes both qualitative and quantitative approaches, with a strong interest in mapping and spatial analysis. Dr. Tita is involved with an interdisciplinary group of scholars working to promote the use of spatial statistics and analysis throughout the social sciences.
Dr. Tita is also a member of the National Consortium on Violence Research (NCOVR), a research and training center specializing in violence research. The Consortium’s mission is to advance basic scientific knowledge about the causes or factors contributing to inter-personal violence, to train the next generation of violence researchers, and to disseminate its research findings to participants, policy-makers, and practitioners.
A brief statement mentioning any recent work he’s done that he would like mentioned as representative of the work he does:
Prior to joining UC-Irvine, Dr. Tita spent two years at the RAND Corporation as a Policy Analyst. There he directed an NIJ funded gun-violence reduction program in the Boyle Heights neighborhood of the City of Los Angeles. The goal of this project is to work with all invested stakeholders to devise and test strategies for reducing gun violence. Partners in this effort include representatives from the criminal justice agencies (LAPD, City Attorney, District Attorney, U.S. Attorney and Los Angles County Probation Department) and well as the community at large (Homeboy Industries/Jobs For a Future, the local Catholic Dioceses, White Memorial Hospital, and the Association of Street Gang Workers.) This work continues at UCI.
Dr. Tita is Principle Investigator on a project investigating homicide over a twenty-year period in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Watts. Of particular interest is the role that ethnic/racial succession played in shaping the changing patterns of homicide over time as Watts has gone from approximately 80% Black, 20% Latino in 1980, to 40% Black, 60% Latino in 2000.
Additionally, Dr. Tita is continuing his work on modeling the epidemics/spatial diffusion of violence over space and time and is examining the causal relationship between homicide and the economic decisions made by firms, such as firm births and deaths and employment decisions.