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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 69575 Find in a Library
Title: Application of the Interorganizational Perspective to Community Based Corrections in an Urban Area
Journal: Criminal Justice Review  Volume:4  Issue:2  Dated:(Fall 1979)  Pages:41-50
Author(s): W Wakefield; V Webb
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 10
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The Interorganizational Relations (IOR) perspective usd in other social science disciplines is used to study the cooperation and communication among community-based corrections efforts in a midwestern city of 370,000.
Abstract: The core assumptions of the IOR perspective are that organizations are faced with scarce resources which induce organizations to share and coordinate, that the use of outside resources reduces the organizations' autonomy, that dependency upon other organizations for resources increases both interaction and external control (reducing autonomy), and that interorganizational relationships can be classified according to cooperation and competition. An IOR scale was used to measure IOR among the community-based agencies of the midwestern city, with eight items tapping awareness, acquaintance, interaction, information exchange, resources exchange (bargaining), overlapping governance (co-optation), joint programs (coalition), and written agreements. The extent of agency interrelationships emerged as being a function of agency resources, as measured by the budget of the agency. The directors of those community-based agencies who had the largest budgets tended to give the most frequent positive responses on IOR items, while smaller agencies scored lowest. The proposition that would apply here is that organizations will strive for autonomy, attempting to minimize the amount of external control exerted by other organizations in the task environment. The unexpected hesitancy of smaller-budgeted agencies to become highly involved in IOR is understandable in regard of the dynamic, politicized, and insecure state of community-based corrections within most communities. Many smaller agencies may be content to maintain their autonomy and continue to serve without perceived advantages to be gained through more interaction. Such findings point to the usefulness in applying IOR for demonstrating strenths and weaknesses in community-based corrections coordination, and for planning such systems. Such measures are also a significant contribution to the field of criminal justice in relation to theory construction and testing. Several tables and 14 references are provided.
Index Term(s): Community-based corrections (adult); Interagency cooperation; Organization development; Organization studies
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