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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 218037 
Title: Institutional Corrections and Soft Technology (From The New Technology of Crime, Law and Social Control, P 215-286, 2007, James M. Byrne and Donald J. Rebovich, eds. -- See NCJ-218026)
Author(s): James M. Byrne; April Pattavina
Date Published: 2007
Page Count: 42
Sponsoring Agency: Criminal Justice Press/Willow Tree Press
Sale Source: Criminal Justice Press/Willow Tree Press
United States of America
Type: Report (Technical)
Format: Book Chapter
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter discusses recent "soft" technology advances ("the various forms of information technology used to administer criminal justice programs and management and control criminal justice populations") in three areas of prison management: initial inmate classification, in-prison inmate management, and inmate release and reentry to the community.
Abstract: The chapter first reviews recent developments in the classification and reclassification of offenders admitted to prison, focusing on the impact of new advances in information technology generally. The discussion distinguishes between "external" and "internal" classification decisions. External classification places a prisoner at a custody level that will determine where the prisoner will be housed. Internal classification determines which cell or housing unit, as well as which facility programs to which the inmate will be assigned. One exhibit provides a flow chart of external and internal classification systems. Another exhibit presents the Virginia Department of Corrections initial inmate classification score sheet and a description of security levels for the Virginia Department of Corrections. A third exhibit presents a typology of high-risk and special-management inmates. A description of soft technologies for in-prison management of inmates focuses on problem solving and "hot spot" analysis, staff training and development, and performance measurement. The chapter identifies and describes a number of ways that new information technology can be applied in managing the transition of inmates from prisons and jails back to their home communities. These technologies pertain to the development of new information-sharing protocols among corrections, police, public health, and treatment providers in the public and private sectors. Other technologies discussed relate to the use of crime analysis technology to map offender locations, treatment/service delivery networks, as well as to identify high-risk neighborhoods. Also discussed is the development of comprehensive information systems that bridge the gap between prison and community. 71 references
Main Term(s): Corrections management
Index Term(s): Computer software; Correctional planning; Inmate classification; Offender classification; Post-release programs; Prerelease programs; Prison management; Risk management; Testing and measurement; Threat assessment; Treatment offender matching
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