Posted Tuesday 3 May 2022
Kingston University has appointed criminology and policing expert Professor Stephen Tong to lead its School of Law, Social and Behavioural Sciences.
The accomplished academic and policing specialist joins the University with 20 years of experience from Canterbury Christ Church University in Kent. There, as School Director of Research and Enterprise, he was involved in developing some of the first police degree programmes in the United Kingdom.
Professor Tong first became interested in police accountability during his undergraduate studies, before continuing with postgraduate studies researching police complaints, then detective training for his PhD. His research focuses on a range of policing topics such as, police training, education and practice, international policing, miscarriages of justice and crime investigation.
Previous career highlights include contributing to establishing a strong provision for undergraduate and postgraduate policing students, founding the Canterbury Centre for Policing Research, of which he was director, and leading on the first law unit of assessment for the 2021 Research Excellence Framework (REF) at the University. Professor Tong has conducted research into a variety policing projects, with the most recent focused on the first direct entry training scheme for detectives in the UK.
In his new role heading Kingston University's School of Law, Social and Behavioural Sciences, Professor Tong will lead academic staff in their specialist research and teaching across criminology, politics and sociology, economics, law and psychology. The wide variety of subject areas covered by the School had made his new post particularly appealing, he said.
He is now looking forward to helping the School evolve under his leadership. "In the short time I've been at Kingston University, I have seen very committed colleagues and examples of extremely interesting work. I want to support this to develop even further, exploring new ideas and innovation to build on the achievements already evident," he said.
"As the world around us continues to change at a considerable pace, it will be important for our research and teaching to remain relevant and adapt to future developments. I'm eager to boost the School's reputation as a place of opportunity for students, providing them with the skills to pursue successful careers delivered by a team with a strong research and scholarship profile."
Being based in the Faculty of Business and Social Sciences, alongside Kingston Business School, presented great potential for collaboration between those disciplines, Professor Tong said.
The Faculty's Acting Dean, Professor Javier Ortega Diego, said Professor Tong would play a key role in shaping the future of the School. "Stephen Tong brings considerable research expertise and strategic vision to his new role as Head of School," he said. "His innovation and experience will be an enormous asset as we work together to achieve Kingston University's ambitions and continue to deliver the highest quality learning for our students."