Reframing Crime and Justice Talk (Live Zoom Event) #1

22 Nov 2023, 10:30am–11:45am NZDT

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The way we report on complex social issues like crime, criminal justice and gangs has an impact on how people understand those issues. And we don’t report into a neutral space. People come to our reporting with existing beliefs and ideas about issues. So how do we talk about and report about Crime and Justice so that we deepen public understanding?

Join Marianne Elliot, Co-Director at The Workshop, in this live Zoom event, as she presents findings from our Crime and Justice research which are particularly relevant to journalists and other people reporting on crime, gangs and criminal justice in Aotearoa New Zealand.


As journalists, it’s useful to understand inaccurate and shallow thinking on key issues so we can see how our reporting could reinforce, avoid or even replace that thinking with a more accurate and deeper understanding of the issue.

When the dominant public understanding of an issue is shallow, as is the case with crime, gangs and criminal justice, our reporting is filtered through those shallow understandings, making it hard to have productive public conversations.

The Workshop has researched expert and public narratives about crime and justice in New Zealand to see where public understanding overlapped with experts and where it diverged.

We tested different ways of writing or talking about crime and criminal justice to identify ways to deepen public understanding, and avoid reinforcing shallow and inaccurate ideas. We have also interviewed experts on gang harm and gangs, reviewed international evidence and developed some recommendations on effective ways to deepen public understanding about gangs and gang harm.

Marianne will share some of the key findings from our research in this one hour talk.



This online event is FREE to attend and will feature a one hour talk with time for questions and answers.

You'll receive a confirmation email once you've registered that includes event details and a zoom link.

This talk is designed for people reporting on and communicating about crime, criminal justice and gangs in the media and elsewhere.


The Workshop is an independent, not-for-profit organisation which researches public understanding of complex social and environmental issues and tests the impact of different stories and narratives on that public understanding. The Workshop was founded in 2018 by Dr Jess Berentson-Shaw and Marianne Elliott.

This research was funded by three philanthropic organisations: the J R McKenzie Trust, the Borrin Foundation and the Tindall Foundation.

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