Two landmark public opinion surveys on crime and punishment completed by Sam Houston State University researchers highlight the current issue of The Public Perspective, a national scholarly journal examining social trends and attitudes.

The surveys, which show Americans are losing faith in the criminal justice system's ability to protect them from crime, were designed and compiled by specialists from SHSU's George Beto Criminal Justice Center.

The research, summarized in the publication's introductory article penned by Timothy Flanagan, dean of SHSU's College of Criminal Justice, complements the journal's examination of crime in America. SHSU survey results are extensively utilized throughout the publication.

The Public Perspective is one of the nation's most prominent periodicals about public opinion issues. Published six times a year, the magazine presents the latest poll findings and tracks attitudinal differences between groups, emerging shifts in public opinion and historical trends. Additionally, the journal publishes thoughtful articles and essays by leading figures in opinion polling and analysis, political science and public policy.

The magazine is published by The Roper Center for Public Opinion Research. Founded in 1947, the center is the leading educational facility in the field of public opinion. It was created to promote the intelligent, responsible, and imaginative use of public opinion in addressing the world's problems. The center also maintains the world's largest archive of public opinion data.

"The Public Perspective is an important resource for those who monitor opinion data and its implications for public policy," Flanagan noted. "The Roper Center's decision to prominently feature SHSU's research on crime and punishment attitudes in America not only puts SHSU's criminal justice program in the national limelight, but it gives scholarly recognition to the survey's important findings."

Data for the SHSU surveys were collected by the Public Policy Research Institute at Texas A&M University. Among the survey's findings, highlighted in Flanagan's article:


Media contact: Phillip Rollfing

June 23, 1997