Center on Sentencing and Corrections

The Effectiveness of Restorative Justice Practices: A Meta-Analysis

The Effectiveness of Restorative Justice Practices: A Meta-Analysis

Latimer, Jeff, Craig Dowden, and Danielle Muise. “The Effectiveness of Restorative Justice Practices: A Meta-Analysis.” The Prison Journal 85, no. 2 (2005): 127-144.

Restorative Justice is an alternative strategy for managing behavior without solitary. “This article provides an empirical synthesis of the existing literature on the effectiveness of restorative justice practices using meta-analytic techniques. The data were aggregated from studies that compared restorative justice programs to traditional nonrestorative approaches to criminal behavior. Victim and offender satisfaction, restitution compliance, and recidivism were selected as appropriate outcomes to adequately measure effectiveness. Although restorative programs were found to be significantly more effective, these positive findings are tempered by an important self-selection bias inherent in restorative justice research. A possible method of addressing this problem, as well as directions for future research, are provided.”

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Keywords: restorative justice, recidivism, reforms and alternatives