Postdoctoral Research Fellow at University of Kent
27 Jun 2022
Dr Aravinda Kosaraju joined Kent Law School in 2018 as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow. Dr Kosaraju’s research broadly focusses on violence against women and children; criminal justice and sexual offending. Dr Kosaraju is an ESRC scholar and her doctoral thesis examined the process of attrition in cases involving crimes of child sexual exploitation in England and Wales employing a Foucauldian Feminist theoretical framework.
Dr Kosaraju worked as the Policy and Research Officer for Parents against Child Sexual Exploitation (PACE), a UK national charity working to support families of sexually exploited children from 2005 to 2013. As a consultant to the Lawyer’s Collective/UNIFEM funded project titled Trafficking of women and children for commercial sexual exploitation, she coordinated research into the socio-legal aspects of prostitution in two of Asia’s largest red light districts of Mumbai and Delhi during 2001-03. She advocated for police reforms in India in her role as Project Officer for the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative, an international non-governmental organization working to promote human rights across the Commonwealth.
Dr Kosaraju has extensive experience of developing training for criminal justice practitioners and also teaches modules in law and criminology. Dr Kosaraju has been a member of many consultative groups for the Department of Children, Schools and Families (DfES), Ministry of Justice (MoJ) and United Kingdom Human Trafficking Centre (UKHTC) contributing the development of policy around safeguarding children from sexual exploitation. She is the founding member of Support After Rape and Sexual Violence Leeds (SARSVL) and a former director of National Working Group for Sexually Exploited Children and Young People (NWG).
Dr Kosaraju is currently working on an ESRC funded socio-legal project titled “Crimes of child sexual exploitation in England – A socio-legal project promoting effective approaches to investigation and prosecution”. This project builds on the learning developed through Dr Kosaraju’s doctoral thesis exploring attrition in cases involving crimes of CSE. Dr Kosaraju’s thesis developed a nuanced understanding of how attrition [the process where cases get dropped at various stages of the criminal justice system] occurs in these cases particularly during investigation and prosecution charging stages and highlighted areas within policy and practice that requires critical reflection. This project takes that understanding to a wider audience through publication of research findings and through engaging with key stakeholders. It aims to develop a user-friendly guide for practitioners who are working in the area of CSE such as police officers; child and public protection units; social care workers; health and education teams; young people and family support workers within the voluntary sector; as well as those involved in supporting victims and witnesses. Through engaging with practitioners this project works towards bridging a significant gap between academic research and practice in the investigation and prosecution of crimes of CSE.