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Working Title of PhD: Mobile Markets: Youth Culture, New Technology and Illicit Drug Markets

Year commenced PhD study: 2020
Institution: University of Glasgow
Funding Source: University of Edinburgh/University of Glasgow (UoE/UofG) Joint PhD Studentship – Criminology
PhD Supervisors: Dr Alistair Fraser (Glasgow) and Dr Angus Bancroft (Edinburgh)


My PhD seeks to transform knowledge of young people’s drug use for the digital age. Young people today have grown into a world where smartphone technology, high-speed Internet and constant connectivity are a normalised part of everyday life. It is apparent, in this context, that the nature of illicit drugs markets has reconfigured in light of this technological revolution, yet knowledge of these markets in Scotland is scant at best. The project will create a valuable new knowledge base relating to shifts in the illicit drug economy and related forms of harm. Throughout the

PhD my research will focus on providing an answer to:
How have mobile technologies altered the ways in which young people acquire, use and distribute illicit drugs?
The project will combine cutting-edge data technologies – data-scraping, ethnography, and darknet trace analysis – with qualitative data-collection. The data generated from the project will support existing work by the Scottish Government Drug Deaths Taskforce, Serious Organised Crime Taskforce, Police Scotland and a range of third sector and civil society groups seeking new evidence and policy innovation.

Recent Publications

Reka Solymosi, Oana Petcu & Jack Wilkinson (2020) Exploring public engagement with missing person appeals on Twitter, Policing and Society, DOI: 10.1080/10439463.2020.1782409 https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10439463.2020.1782409?journalCode=gpas20



University of Glasgow


Ivy Lodge
63 Gibson Street
University of Glasgow

Research Themes

New Media, Surveillance and Technology

Violence, Drugs and Alcohol

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