A Framework; Not a Model

The Framework does not attempt to proscribe implementation in precisely the same way in every community. In this way, it is not \”a model.\” It is, instead, intended to frame a purpose, articulate principles, and propose a process for decision making that can be applied to the system as a whole-to all those entering the system, regardless of their justice system status; to all types of cases, regardless of their severity; and to all stakeholders, regardless of their role.

– Morris Thigpen, NIC Director

The principle product of this initiative is A Framework for Evidence-Based Decision Making in State and Local Criminal Justice Systems (\”the Framework\”).

The Framework

  1. identifies the key structural elements of state and local systems informed by evidence-based practice;
  2. defines a vision of safer communities; and
  3. puts forward the belief that risk and harm reduction are fundamental goals of the justice system, and that these can be achieved without sacrificing offender accountability or other important justice system outcomes.

The Framework both acknowledges the importance of the key premises and values underlying our criminal justice system and puts forward a set of principles to guide evidence-based decision making within that context. The principles themselves are evidence-based.

The Framework highlights some of the most groundbreaking research in the justice field-evidence that clearly demonstrates that we can reduce pretrial misconduct and offender recidivism.

It also identifies the key stakeholders at the state and local levels who must be actively engaged in a collaborative partnership if an evidence-based system of justice is to be achieved.

Key Features of the Framework

  • Lessons from the Institute for Healthcare Improvement’s 100,000 Lives campaign
  • 7 ways to reduce recidivism
  • Sample logic models
  • Research findings matrix of what doesn’t work, what works, what’s promising, and what’s not clear about reducing pretrial misbehavior and offender recidivism

Click here to download the Fourth Edition of the Framework.

The current Framework (Fourth Edition) reflects revisions and refinements following the pilot testing of EBDM in multiple individual communities (Phases II/III) and in partnership with state level colleagues (Phases IV/V/VI). This version is considered a \”continued work in progress\” since revisions and refinement are expected as state and local jurisdictions continue to use research to inform their EBDM approaches and to evaluate and learn from their results.