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In This Chapter

The Impacts of Privatization in Corrections

The State of Evidence and Recommendations for Moving Forward

Authored by: Andrea Montes Lindsey , Daniel P. Mears

Handbook on the Consequences of Sentencing and Punishment Decisions

Print publication date:  August  2018
Online publication date:  August  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138608931
eBook ISBN: 9780429466380
Adobe ISBN:

10.4324/9780429466380-18

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Abstract

In recent decades, debates about prison privatization have crescendoed. What these debates have largely overlooked, however, is that privatization efforts pervade all aspects of corrections, including probation and parole. In addition, these debates are intense and yet have occurred alongside little systematic, credible empirical research about the relative impacts of private corrections as compared to public corrections. Empirical research instead has focused on a narrow set of outcomes and has not considered the broader impacts, including potential collateral consequences, of privatizing—or not privatizing—correctional sanctions and services. It also has not systematically examined other dimensions of privatization, such as the need for it or the quality of services provided. To advance scholarship and contribute to productive policy discussions about privatization, this chapter presents a conceptual framework for assessing the state of evidence on private corrections, and then identifies ten recommendations for guiding and improving research, theory, and policy and practice.

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