Dr Zoe Alker

Lecturer in Historical Social Data Science

Research Overview

My work explores how the use of data science methodologies can be used to advance histories of crime, justice and punishment from the eighteenth to the twentieth centuries. My research has involved co-creating large-scale historical datasets that benefit from the application of various data science techniques (linked data, data mining, and data visualisation) to the history of law, crime and justice in the eighteenth, nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

My work on the digitisation of criminal justice records makes accessible an unrivalled record of past lives lived, and not simply information about crime and punishment, but about the experiences of large swathes of the population who did not leave extensive written records. I am now using these data science techniques to develop related areas of the social and cultural history of modern Britain, including health and society.