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Matthew Thompson

Education

  • MA, Sociology, University of Wyoming
  • BS, Sociology, Montana State University
  • BA, History, Montana State University

About

I am a PhD candidate in Sociology at the University of California, Davis. I study policing, violence, and complex organizations. My dissertation research examines how department structures and policies influence rates of police use of force. My teaching background includes courses on criminology, the criminal justice system, quantitative methodology, and general sociology.

Dissertation
"Deadly Decisions: Policing Organizations, Use of Force Policies, and Officer-Involved Shootings"

Manuscripts in Progress:
Thompson, Matthew J. "Organizational Variation in California Police Departments' Rates of Fatal and Non-Fatal Force." [Working paper for dissertation]

Thompson, Matthew J. "Deadly Decisions: Policing Organizations, Use of Force Policies, and Officer-Involved Fatalities among the 100 Largest U.S. Police Departments." [Working paper for dissertation]

Thompson, Matthew J. "The Standard Template: Content and Similarities in California Law Enforcement Agencies' Use of Force Policies." [Working paper for dissertation]

Smith, Chris M. and Matthew J. Thompson. "Race, Violence, and Threat: California Police Use of Force." [Working paper]

Research Focus

Criminology, policing, violence, policy analysis, quantitative analysis, sociology of complex organizations, social network analysis

Selected Publications

Other Publications

Smith, Chris M., and Matthew J. Thompson. 2019. "How California is Leading the Way in Gathering and Publicizing Data on the Use of Force by Police." Scholars Strategy Network, March 14.

Thompson, Matthew J., and Chris M. Smith. 2017. "Citizen Science and Crowdsourced Data Collection, not Government Statistics, Provide the Most Reliable Count of Citizen Fatalities by Police." The London School of Economics Public Policy Group. USAPP American Politics and Policy Blog, May 5.

Conference Presentations

Thompson, Matthew J. 2019. "Use of Force Policies: Evaluating Department Variation in Rates of Use of Force." Accepted for the annual meeting of the American Society of Criminology, November 13-16, San Francisco, CA.

Thompson, Matthew J. 2019. "Use of Force Policies and Constraining Fatal Police Violence." Accepted for the annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Social Problems, August 9-11, New York, NY.

Thompson, Matthew J. 2018. "Organizational Variation in Structure and Policy as a Source of Fatal Police Use of Force." Presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Criminology, November 17, Atlanta, GA

Smith, Chris M., and Matthew J. Thompson. 2017. “Race, Violence, and Threat: A National Analysis of Police and Civilian Interactions, 2015." Presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Criminology, November 15, Philadelphia, PA.

Thompson, Matthew J. 2011. "Kids and Guns." Presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association. August 23, Las Vegas, NV.

Teaching

SOC 151- The Criminal Justice System, Summer Session I 2018

SOC 003- Social Problems, Summer Session II 2015