Special Issue "Research on Gang-Related Violence in the 21st Century"

A special issue of Social Sciences (ISSN 2076-0760).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 September 2020.

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Matthew Valasik
Guest Editor
Sociology Department, Louisiana State University, USA
Interests: the socio-spatial dynamics of gang behavior;effective strategies aimed at reducing neighborhood violence and discouraging gang activity
Dr. Shannon E. Reid
Guest Editor
Criminology & Criminal Justice, UNC Charlotte, North Carolina, USA
Interests: Street Gangs; White Power Youth; Crime; Violence

Special Issue Information

Dear colleague,

Conflict, including the threat or fear of potential violence, or being witness to or a victim of physical, violence, constantly surrounds gangs and their communities and is the principal driver sustaining gang life. Much of the conventional gang-related research remains focused on this violence as a neighborhood-based phenomenon that directly impacts local community residents; however, the ubiquity of digital technology, particularly social media platforms, has disrupted this traditional dynamic. Online violence, including threats, taunts, or posting of violent acts that have taken place, is much less understood. This knowledge gap includes the link between the online activities of gang members and how it can manifest into real-world action. This Special Issue will examine the diverse nature of gang-related violence with the goal of better understanding the growing complexities of gang violence over the last two decades to better inform public policy solutions. Given the dynamic nature of gang-related violence today, we aim to include empirical and theoretical research (quantitative, qualitative, or mixed-methods) with multi/interdisciplinary perspectives from around the world that highlights cutting-edge approaches to examining gang-related violence. All submissions will be considered; however primary consideration will be given to manuscripts that

  • Investigate the relationship between online activity and real-world violence;
  • Examine the efficacy of gang-related violence interventions;
  • Conduct multi-site comparisons of gang-related violence;
  • Conduct cross-cultural studies of gang-related violence;
  • Describe innovative approaches to advance our understanding of gang-related violence.
Dr. Matthew Valasik
Dr. Shannon E. Reid
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Social Sciences is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • gangs
  • violence
  • homicide
  • guns
  • conflict
  • youth
  • social media
  • neighborhood effects
  • intervention
  • public policy

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission, see below for planned papers.

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: Gang Violence: Formidable Challenges and Potential Solutions

Title: Street Gang Intervention: A Review and Good Lives Extension

Title: The Social Network Consequences of a Gang Murder Blow-out

Title: East Side Story: A Latent Class Analysis of Gang Homicide in East Los Angeles

Title: The Efficient Diffusion of Deterrence Messaging and the Network Structure of Street Gangs

Title: Gangs and Gun Violence: Where Does Drug Trafficking Fit In?

Title: Are Gun Violence Reduction Strategies Relevant for Gang Intervention? An Assessment of the Group Violence Intervention and Cure Violence

Title: Gang Enhancements to Reduce Gang Violence: A Southern Strategy Targeting Black Citizens

Title: Violent and Non-Violent Gang Incidents: A Comparison of Police Gang-Related Incident Reports

Title: Displaced Aggression: An investigation into the social and spatial properties of street-gang violence following the imposition of a civil gang injunction

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