Cristina d’Aniello


Cristina obtained her first degree in Law at the Seconda Università degli Studi di Napoli. After passing the bar examination and working as a lawyer in Italy, she moved to the UK in 2012 to undertake an MSc in Clinical Criminology at the University of Leicester. Cristina concluded her MSc with a distinction and awarded the Palgrave Macmillan Best Dissertation Prize. She then joined the Department of Criminology to study for her PhD and work as a Graduate Teaching Assistant.

Cristina is currently studying for her PhD at the University of Leicester, where she is also a member of the academic staff in the Criminology Department and contributes to the undergraduate campus based teaching of Introduction to Criminal Justice and Clinical Criminology. Her main research interests involve jury decision-making, psychology in the courtroom, deception detection in forensic contexts.

PhD Research

Cristina’s PhD research project aims at investigating the decision-making processes that lead jurors towards their choices in criminal jury trials, with particular attention to the potential differences that might arise depending on the impact of two variables on jury decision making. These are, firstly, the need on the part of the juries to provide a motivation for verdict decisions and, secondly, the presence of professional judges on the jury panel (considering that these two conditions are indeed required in some countries). With this aim, Cristina is conducting a comparative study between two criminal justice systems that adopt opposite procedures in this respect; the British system (where juries are not required to motivate their verdicts and there are no professionals on the panel) and the Italian system (where juries are required to justify verdicts and there are professional judges on the panel). Moving on the basis of theoretical literature that has long been concerned with both the crucial role of motivations in choices and the mechanisms of influence, pressure and related compliance responses occurring within the context of group decision-making, this PhD project will empirically test the potential impact of the two abovementioned variables on jury deliberations. Cristina’s study will, therefore, add to the debate on jury decision-making a novel, unheard voice, which will contribute to the literature in the field, generating a fuller understanding of the dynamics and processes that lead juries towards their final decisions.

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Contact Details

The School of Criminology
152-154 Upper New Walk

T: +44 (0)116 252 2458


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