Greg Pogarsky's research focuses primarily on developing more refined and descriptively accurate theories of offender-decision making. Prof. Pogarsky has examined several aspects of this topic: 1) How insights from Judgment and Decision-Making research and from psychology can be integrated into criminological models of offender decision-making; 2) How attitudes toward future consequences affect offender decision-making. Such research has investigated the related theoretical constructs of self-control, impulsivity, discounting, and criminal propensity; 3) How perceptions about the risks of crime are formed and modified. These issues have been investigated with randomized laboratory experiments, surveys of University students and police officers, and data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health and the National Youth Survey.
In a second line of research, Prof. Pogarsky has examined the life outcomes experienced by children born to young mothers. This research began in 1997 with an investigation using data from the Cambridge Study in Delinquent Development that was coauthored with Daniel Nagin and David Farrington. Research on this topic has continued with data from the Rochester Youth Development Study in collaboration with Terence Thornberry and Alan Lizotte. A recent article investigated the mechanisms explaining why children of young mothers are disproportionately prone to crime, and these analyses are currently being extended to other problem outcomes of children born to young mothers.