Robert Lytle

Robert Lytle

Dr. Robert (Bob) Lytle is an Associate Professor in the School of Criminal Justice and Criminology (SCJC) and has been at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock since Fall 2016. He has also served as the Graduate Coordinator for all three graduate programs in the SCJC.

Bob earned his PhD in Criminology & Criminal Justice from the University of Nebraska-Omaha. For his dissertation, Bob analyzed change in the content of Sex Offender Registration and Notification laws in all 50 states over time. During his last 18 months he spent in Nebraska, he worked for the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services (NDCS) as an intern in the Research, Planning and Accreditation division. While interning with the NDCS, Bob completed numerous analyses relating to institutional and community correctional operations that were used by both the Department and the Nebraska State Legislature. Additionally, he worked closely with several outside research agencies, including the Council of State Governments Justice Reinvestment Center. Prior to entering the PhD program in Nebraska, Bob’s scholarly training was in Psychology. He earned a M.A. in Experimental Psychology from Radford University in 2010 and a B.S. in Psychology (Minor in Criminal Justice) from James Madison University in 2007. Before starting his Masters program, Bob spent 9 months as a staff supervisor in a Residential Treatment Facility for juveniles with behavioral and justice-related issues.

His research generally focuses on the ways societies define and respond to crime. He is particularly interested in the processes and factors by which criminal justice policy is created, implemented, changed, and terminated, along with the outcomes of such policies. His recent work has focused on sex offense laws and correctional procedures (restrictive housing, misconduct hearings, parole board decisions, parole outcomes, etc.). Ultimately, Bob’s long-term goal for this line of research is to assess and generate theoretical explanations for criminal justice policy processes and punishment more broadly. In the short-term, however, Dr. Lytle’s interest is in promoting success in our responses to crime as well as identifying areas in which we may improve such responses. Relatedly, his work in each of these substantive areas has led to several research and policy briefs at the request of state legislatures. Dr. Lytle also enjoys collaborating with local, state, and national agencies in efforts to develop and evaluate crime responses beyond corrections and policy. Much of Bob’s recent work has been applied in nature, stemming from collaborative and evaluative research efforts requested by local and state agencies. More specifically, Dr. Lytle helped evaluate CIT training in a North Carolina prison as well as an assessment of the Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Needs in a rural county in Nebraska.

Recently, Dr. Lytle is or has been involved in an assortment of research contracts through the SCJC, including a study of correctional work and living environments in Arkansas’s correctional facilities, disproportionate minority contact with the Juvenile and Adult Criminal Justice Systems in Arkansas, surveys of community attitudes in Little Rock, and Muslim experiences with crime and criminal justice in Arkansas. He is a co-PI on the NSF-awarded Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program  that provides undergraduate students with educational and field experience on research examining Muslim experiences with hate crime and Islamophobia in the South.

His research has been published in scholarly journals such as Criminology, Criminal Justice and Behavior, American Journal of Criminal Justice, Criminal Justice Policy Review, Journal of Crime and Justice, Law and PolicySociological Inquiry, and Criminal Justice Studies. He has also served as the Treasurer and a charter member of the Sex Offense Policy Research Workgroup, Director of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences Assessment Committee. Finally, Dr. Lytle is currently a member in several other professional organizations, including American Society of Criminology, Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, American Evaluation Association.

Dr. Bob can be reached via email at or 501-916-6634.

Dr. Bob Lytle’s vita.