Five years of Transforming Rehabilitation: Markets, management and values

Date01 March 2019
Published date01 March 2019
PRB825958 3..7
The Journal of Community and Criminal Justice
Probation Journal
Five years of
2019, Vol. 66(1) 3–7
ª The Author(s) 2019
Article reuse guidelines:
DOI: 10.1177/0264550519825958
Rehabilitation: Markets,
management and values
This special edition on Transforming Rehabilitation (TR) appears at a timely moment,
five years on from the beginning of TR reforms, and following the release of a series
of censorious reports from a Parliamentary committee (Justice), the National Audit
Office and the Probation Inspectorate. All of them concurred with respect to the
inadequacies of the financial model for TR, its logistical malfunctions, wastefulness,
and most of all, failures towards those caught up in the criminal justice system.
Moreover, these could hardly be dismissed as the predictable polemics of critical
interest groups. This special issue, therefore, appears as the wider probation
community has had an opportunity to digest the scale of the current situation, as well
as consider what the next phase of development might be.
A second aim is to provide a further point of reference from the previous special
themed issue of this journal, ‘Transforming Rehabilitation: Reflections Two Years
(63:2), by updating the prescient concerns originally raised in that issue, some
of which remain salient, while other predicted outcomes did not materialise as
envisaged. Thirdly, we aim to document the implementation and practice of TR in its
particular historical space, in the awareness that this knowledge and institutional
memory might otherwise fade from the record as the next iteration of probation
evolves. Accordingly, the articles here are written by researchers and practitioners
whose work offers contemporary insights into the experiences and perceptions of
those directly involved in implementing the programme. Fourthly, the collection
offers a kaleidoscopic view of TR from the diverse vantage points of stakeholders,
demonstrating the practical complexities of implementing TR at different interfaces.
Finally, these accounts offer rare insights into otherwise opaque spaces of authority
and decision-making, especially at higher reaches of political, executive and
managerial authority whose activities are least well-documented in the literature.
The special issue is also part of a wider endeavour to address empirical holes
and narrative gaps in the TR story (appreciating that some questions may never be
adequately answered). The order of the articles thus follows the direction of
responsibility for decision-making and implementation as they flowed through dif-
ferent agencies, from the government in Whitehall to Community Rehabilitation
Company (CRC) level management, through to specific sites such as prisons,
community settings and probation. Each individual article illuminates...

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