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What Works in Crime Prevention and Rehabilitation: An Assessment of Systematic Reviews

Weisburd, D; Farrington, DP; Gill, C; Ajzenstadt, M; Bennett, T; Bowers, K; Caudy, MS; ... Wooditch, A; + view all (2017) What Works in Crime Prevention and Rehabilitation: An Assessment of Systematic Reviews. Criminology and Public Policy , 16 (2) pp. 415-449. 10.1111/1745-9133.12298. Green open access

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Abstract

RESEARCH SUMMARY: Just four decades ago, the predominant narrative in crime prevention and rehabilitation was that nothing works. Since that time, criminologists have accumulated a wide body of evidence about programs and practices in systematic reviews. In this article, we summarize what is known in seven broad criminal justice areas by drawing on 118 systematic reviews. Although not everything works, through our “review of reviews,” we provide persuasive evidence of the effectiveness of programs, policies, and practices across a variety of intervention areas. POLICY IMPLICATIONS: It is time to abandon the idea that “nothing works,” not only in corrections but also in developmental, community, and situational prevention; sentencing; policing; and drug treatment. Nevertheless, key gaps remain in our knowledge base. The results of systematic reviews should provide more specific guidance to practitioners. In many areas few randomized evaluations have been conducted. Finally, researchers, through their studies and systematic reviews, must pay more attention to cost–benefit analysis, qualitative research, and descriptive validity.

Type: Article
Title: What Works in Crime Prevention and Rehabilitation: An Assessment of Systematic Reviews
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1111/1745-9133.12298
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.1111/1745-9133.12298
Language: English
Additional information: © 2017 American Society of Criminology. This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Crime prevention, rehabilitation, systematic reviews, meta-analysis, program evaluation
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Security and Crime Science
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10030141
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