Designing case management systems in juvenile justice contexts

Elizabeth Moore

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    This paper applies principles, dimensions and functions of case management models adopted in the community care sector to juvenile justice intervention. Consecutive ideological shifts in the official response to juvenile offending began with the separation in the early 20th century of juvenile offenders from adult criminal courts and corrections programmes. The result has been changes in the emphasis on welfare, justice, crime prevention and restorative justice principles in models of intervention. The 1970's 'nothing works' literature in corrections brought into question the rehabilitative efficacy of the welfare approach to intervention with both adults and juveniles. It provided a rationale for 'just deserts' thinking and an emphasis on surveillance programmes, and subsequently for strategies to divert selected offenders from formal intervention. The more recent 'What Works?' literature sheds optimism over the effectiveness of rehabilitative interventions that aim to reduce juvenile recidivism. Contemporary juvenile justice systems consist of a complex mix of primary, secondary and tertiary interventions. Practitioner decisions about whether and how to intervene with an individual offender are increasingly based on the application of pre-tested 'risk' and 'criminogenic needs' assessment instruments developed to provide a foundation for planned intervention and measurable outcomes. This practice context, marked by specialized assessment instruments and a complex mix of specialised interventions, calls for an overarching and systematic approach to intervention. While case management systems have not attracted a great deal of attention from juvenile justice researchers and administrators, examples drawn from the literature demonstrate the applicability of 'minimal', 'coordination' and 'comprehensive' models of case management, evident in the community care sector, to the juvenile justice context. Ozanne's (1990) dimensions of case management provide a usframework to assist system design.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)3-9
    Number of pages7
    JournalAustralian Journal of Case Management
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2004


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