Encyclopedia of Criminology and Criminal Justice

2014 Edition
| Editors: Gerben Bruinsma, David Weisburd

History of Staff Skills in Probation

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-5690-2_27


In the last few years, the idea that “nothing works” has been systematically confronted, and more and more knowledge is accumulating to demonstrate that a lot could be done to reduce reoffending and improve public safety. An extensive body of literature now emphasizes what is known in terms of evidence-based practice and interventions based on different theoretical perspectives (risk/needs/responsivity, desistance, good lives model). Increasingly, research uncovers other aspects that influence the effectiveness of interventions, like treatment readiness and motivation for change, organizational structures, neighborhood characteristics, and so on. From time to time, a focus on the skills and characteristics of probation and parole staff appears in the literature and then disappears again. At the origins of probation, staff skills seemed to be quite crucial. Later they became important but not essential, and then they almost disappeared in the years of “nothing works.” As a new...

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This work was supported by The Romanian Council for Scientific Research (CNCSIS) under the contract no. 29/02.08.2010.

The author is grateful to Prof. Brian Stout for his advice and comments.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Sociology and Social WorkUniversity of BucharestBucharestRomania