Indiana Judicial Center > Publications & Documents > Indiana Probation Best Practices Guide > Reducing Offender Recidivism Reducing Offender Recidivism

The National Institute of Corrections has promoted the use of evidence-based practices to reduce offender recidivism since the mid-1990’s.  “Evidence-based practice is a significant trend throughout all human service fields that emphasize outcomes.  Interventions within corrections are considered effective when they reduce offender risk and subsequent recidivism and therefore make a positive long-term contribution to public safety.”  Implementing Evidence-Based Practice in Community Corrections:  The Principles of Effective Intervention,” April 30, 2004.

As part of its implementation strategy, NIC entered into a collaborative effort with the Crime and Justice Institute to develop a model for implementing evidence-based practice in criminal justice systems.  This model (referred to as the Integrated Model) focuses on evidence-based practices (highlighting eight principles for effective offender interventions), organizational change, and collaboration.

The “evidence” for evidence-based practices is a body of knowledge based on 30 years of research conducted by scholars in North America and Europe, according to Dr. Edward Latessa of the University of Cincinnati.  In his paper titled “What Works in Reducing Recidivism?”, Dr. Latessa explains that this body of research “demonstrates empirically that theoretically sound, well-designed programs that meet certain conditions can appreciably reduce recidivism rates for offenders.  Through the review and analyses of hundreds of studies, researchers have identified a set of principles that should guide corrections programs.”

The Principles of Effective Interventions
Learn more about the 8 principles of effective offender interventions.

Re-Engineering Probation Towards Greater Public Safety
Learn more about effectively implementing evidence-based practices in probation.

Criminogenic Needs
Learn more about the factors that are directly related to crime.

Quality Assurance (CPAI)
Learn more about assessing correctional programs for effectiveness.

Recidivism
Learn more about utilizing evidence-based practices to reduce offender recidivism.

Research Resources
Access links to research on effective offender interventions.