Colleen Eren

Colleen P. Eren

Associate Professor of Sociology and Criminal Justice, William Paterson University of New Jersey

Areas of Expertise

  • White-Collar crime
  • Crime and media
  • Critical criminology
  • Qualitative methods
  • Social movements

Key Findings

  • Since 2000, there has been a decrease in the death row population that led to a 40-year low in public support of the death penalty (around 63%) in 2014. MORE
  • By aligning with the larger movement against mass incarceration, the anti-death penalty movement had access to more resources to build their cause. MORE
  • More than 80% of criminal justice students reported experiencing some type of victimization or knew someone close to them who had been a victim. MORE
  • Approximately 40% of criminal justice students reported experiencing a victimization crime. MORE
  • The media portrayed false narratives that supported public vilification of Bernie Madoff. MORE
  • The media failed to report on institutions (such as the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission) and governmental policies that were designed to push home ownership as well as the fact that a majority of the Madoff dealings fell within the law. MORE


Colleen Eren, Associate Professor of Sociology and Criminal Justice at William Paterson University, is an expert in white-collar crime, crime and media, criminological theory, qualitative methods, criminal justice reform policy and social movements.

Eren is the author of three books. “Reform Nation: The First Step Act and the Movement to End Mass Incarceration”; “Bernie Madoff and the Crisis: The Public Trial of Capitalism”; and “The Impact of Supreme Court Cases on U.S. Institutions.” She previously served as the director of organizing at New Yorkers Against the Death Penalty, a non-profit which successfully kept capital punishment out of New York, and was a steering committee member of Amnesty’s Program to Abolish the Death Penalty. 

She has been published in numerous academic journals, including, The Journal of White Collar and Corporate Crime, Journal of Criminal Justice Education, The Journal of Sport and Social Issues and Community College Journal of Research and Practice.

Eren received her Ph.D. in Sociology from the City University of New York Graduate Center and B.A. (Phi Beta Kappa) in Humanities and Social Sciences from Hofstra University.