Dr Karina Garcia-Reyes

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About me


I received my PhD (Politics) from the University of Bristol in 2018. My thesis focused on analysing the lives of 33 drug trafficking criminals. I carried out semi-structured interviews in Mexico to collect field data.  My work revolved around identifying how participants understand crimes such as murder, kidnapping, and torture.  My dissertation was awarded "Best Thesis of the Faculty by Social Sciences and Law" in 2019.

Since then, I have focused on disseminating the results of my research on drug trafficking violence in Mexico and drug policy alternatives. In 2021 I published a book 'Morir es un alivio [When Dying is a Relief]', based on my doctoral thesis, addressed to the general public and policy makers in Mexico and the United States.


I have worked in collaboration with different Mexican government institutions, including the Federal Secretariat of Security and Public Protection, to work as part of an interdisciplinary team in the development of new policies focussed on tackling gender violence and youth delinquency.




I am keen to supervise topics related to Transnational Organised Crime, Violent Crime in the Global South and Offender Studies. I am particularly interested in the following topics:

  • Global Drug Policies
  • Drug Trafficking Violence
  • Masculinities and Crime


In terms of methodology, I am keen to supervise graduate research drawing on qualitative methodology. In particular, those interested in:

  • Discourse Analysis
  • Grounded Theory and
  • Life story Interviews

Area of expertise

Offender Studies, Transnational Organised Crime, Drug Policy, Masculinities and Crime, Qualitative Research Methods.


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