James Nolan

James Nolan, Ph.D. is a professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at West Virginia University where he teaches courses relating to institutional reform, structured inequality, and social control. His research focuses on police reform, hate crime, and crime measurement. He has received funding in recent years from the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Department of Justice, and the American Statistical Association. In 2014 he was appointed to the National Academy of Science Panel on Modernizing the Nation’s Crime Statistics.

Dr. Nolan’s recent publications include three books: Policing in an Age of Reform: An Agenda for Research and Practice (Palgrave/MacMillan), The Violence of Hate: Understanding Harmful Forms of Bias and Bigotry, 4th edition (Rowman & Littlefield), and Engaging Faculty in Group-Level Change for Institutional Transformation: Disrupting Inequity and Building Inclusive Academic Departments (Routledge). In addition, he has published nearly 70 book chapters and professional journal articles appearing in outlets such as the American Behavioral Scientist; British Journal of Criminology, Journal of Quantitative Criminology; Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice; Justice, Information Sciences; Policing & Society; Criminal Justice Studies; Homicide Studies; Journal of Criminal Justice, and The American Sociologist.  

Dr. Nolan’s professional career began as a police officer in Wilmington, Delaware. In 13 years with that department, he rose to the rank of lieutenant and worked in a variety of divisions, including patrol, community policing, and drug, organized crime and vice. He is a 1992 graduate of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) National Academy. Just prior to joining the faculty at West Virginia University, Dr. Nolan worked for the FBI as a unit chief in the Crime Analysis, Research and Development Unit that provided management oversight for the National Hate Crime Data Collection Program. Dr. Nolan earned a Ph.D. from Temple University. His graduate work focused on the study of group and social processes.