Hi – I’m Emma Barrett. This blog is an offshoot of the Crimepsychblog, which grew out of the Yahoo Crimepsych discussion group (now defunct), which was itself originally established so I could share new research findings with the dozen or so other students  on the 2001-02 Masters in Investigative Psychology at Liverpool University. We’ve come a long way since then! After my Masters I went on to a PhD at the University of Birmingham. You can read my thesis here.

I work as a research psychologist and writer with a passion for translating research into practical advice and guidance for non-psychologists, and for helping other psychologists (particularly students) find relevant new research. I am an Honorary Researcher in Psychology at Lancaster University and my career includes more than a decade leading a behavioural science research team conducting and communicating research for a range of law enforcement and other public sector customers.

As well as my work and training in legal and criminological psychology I have a parallel interest in the psychological qualities required to survive and thrive in extreme environments. I am author (with Paul Martin) of  Extreme: Why some people thrive at the limits, published by OUP in 2014.


Barrett, E.C., & Martin, P.M. (2014). Extreme: Why some people thrive at the limits. Oxford: Oxford University Press

Barrett, E. C., & Hamilton?Giachritsis, C. (2013). The victim as a means to an end: Detective decision making in a simulated investigation of attempted rape. Journal of Investigative Psychology and Offender Profiling10(2):200-218.

Ormerod, T. C., Barrett, E. C., & Taylor, P. J. (2008). Investigative sense-making in criminal contexts. In J.M.C. Schraagen, L. Militello, T. Ormerod, and R. Lipshitz (Eds.). Naturalistic Decision Making and Macrocognition. Aldershot : Ashgate Publishing

Alison, L., Barrett, E. C., & Crego, J. (2007). Criminal investigative decision making: Context and Process. In R. R. Hoffman (Ed.),Expertise Out of Context (Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Naturalistic Decision Making) (pp. 79-95). New York, NY: Lawrence Erlbaum

Barrett, E. C. (2005). Psychological research and police investigations: does the research meet the needs? In L. Alison (Ed.), The Forensic Psychologist’s casebook: Psychological profiling and criminal investigation(pp. 47-67). Cullompton: Willan Publishing.

Alison, L., & Barrett, E. C. (2004). The Interpretation and Utilization of Offender Profiles: A critical review of “traditional” approaches to profiling. In J. Adler (Ed.), Forensic Psychology: Concepts, Debates and Practice (pp. 58-77). Cullompton, England: Willan Publishing.

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