Risk factors for arson recidivism in adult offenders

Field, Oliver Hugh (2016). Risk factors for arson recidivism in adult offenders. University of Birmingham. Foren.Psy.D.

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This thesis explores risk factors for recidivistic arson in adult offenders. Chapter one provides an introduction to the characteristics of adult firesetters and theoretical approaches to understanding their behaviour. Chapter two provides a critique of the Fire Setting Scale (FSS) in terms of its psychometric properties and concludes that the FSS shows promise as a psychometric measure of fire interest and antisociality associated with firesetting in the general population. Chapter three contains a systematic review of the evidence base relating to risk factors for recidivistic arson in adult offenders. Standardised effect sizes are calculated and the data synthesised to identify risk factors with varying strengths of empirical support. The 15 studies reviewed varied in quality, contained few female subjects, and often studied psychiatric rather than wider criminal justice populations. The empirical research presented in Chapter four consists of a retrospective case-control study comparing a large sample of recidivist and first-time arsonists on a range of variables. Separate analyses for female and male subjects revealed differences in risk factors. Logistic regression was used to build predictive models of arson recidivism which were then operationalised into gender-specific risk prediction tools. Theoretical and clinical implications of the thesis are discussed in Chapter five, and a preliminary model of arson recidivism is proposed.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Foren.Psy.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Foren.Psy.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Life & Environmental Sciences
School or Department: School of Psychology
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
URI: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/6639


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