Karin D. Martin

Associate Professor

Karin D. Martin is a crime policy specialist whose areas of expertise are monetary sanctions, racial disparities in the criminal justice system, and decision-making in the criminal justice context. These issues come together in her current projects, which examine the use of money in punishment (e.g., fines, fees, restitution, etc.).

She is currently co-PI in a five-year research project examining the use of monetary sanctions in eight states and she has given testimony on the issue of criminal justice debt to the New York State Assembly and to the United States Commission on Civil Rights.

Karin studied Psychology at Stanford University and worked in the non-profit sector in the San Francisco Bay Area before attending University of California, Berkeley where she earned an MPP, an MA in Political Science, and a PhD in Public Policy. She was a post-doctoral scholar in the Psychology Department at UCLA where she was also a Fellow with the Center for Policing Equity. She was Assistant Professor of Public Management at John Jay College of Criminal Justice and The Graduate Center of the City University of New York (2013-2017) and was a Visiting Professor at the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley, in 2016.

Her work has appeared in a variety of journals across disciplines, including: Social Issues and Policy Review, Annual Review of Criminology, Sociological Perspectives, Law and Human Behavior, Journal of Social and Political Psychology, Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice, International Journal of Prisoner Health, Policy Insights from the Behavioral and Brain Sciences, and UCLA Criminal Justice Law Review. She has been a Fellow at the Center for Research on Social Change at UC Berkeley, a Berkeley Empirical Legal Studies Fellow, a National Science Foundation-funded Fellow in the Integrated Graduate Education Research and Training (IGERT) Program in Politics, Economics, Psychology, and Public Policy, and was a 2009 RAND Summer Associate.


Martin, K., Spencer-Suarez, K., Kirk, G. Pay or Display: Monetary sanctions and the performance of accountability and procedural integrity in New York & Illinois courts. RSF: The Russell Sage Foundation Journal of the Social Sciences. [In press.]

Friedman, A. Harris, B. Huebner, K. Martin, B. Pettit, S. Shannon, and B. Sykes What is wrong with Monetary Sanctions? Directions for Policy, Practice, and Research. (authors in alphabetical order) RSF: The Russell Sage Foundation Journal of the Social Sciences. [In press.]

Spencer-Suarez, K., & Martin, K. D. (2021) Navigating the Monetary Sanctions Maze: Understanding and Confusion Among Criminal Legal Debtors. Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice, 37(1), 4-24.

Martin, K. D. (2020) “The Plurality of Perspectives on Monetary Sanctions”: An Introductory Essay. Sociological Perspectives, 63(6), 901–920.

Martin, K. D., & Fowle, M. Z. (2020) Restitution without Restoration? Exploring the Gap between the Perception and Implementation of Restitution. Sociological Perspectives, 63(6), 1015–1037.

Martin K. (2020) Law, Money, People: Insights from a Brief History of Court Funding Concerns. UCLA Criminal Justice Law Review, 4(1).

Martin, K., Taylor, A., Howell, B. and Fox, A. (2020) Does criminal justice stigma affect health and health care utilization? A systematic review of public health and medical literature, International Journal of Prisoner Health, Vol. 16 No. 3, pp. 263-279.

Kahn, K. & Martin, K. (2020) The Social Psychology of Racially Biased Policing: Evidence-Based Policy Responses Policy Insights from the Behavioral and Brain Sciences.

Martin K. (2018) Monetary Myopia: an examination of institutional response to revenue from monetary sanctions for misdemeanors. Criminal Justice Policy Review, Vol. 29, No. 6-7, pp. 630-662.

Martin, K. Bryan L. Sykes, Sarah Shannon, Frank Edwards, and Alexes Harris. (2018) Monetary Sanctions: Legal Financial Obligations in US Systems of Justice. Annual Review of Criminology, 1:10.1–10.25.


Research & News Highlights