New to Check out these 11 resources for policymakers.

By , January 29, 2013

Note: In April 2014 we published the white paper Using Cost-Benefit Analysis for Justice Policymaking. It is intended for a diverse audience, including elected officials and their staff; policymakers; people who work in adult or juvenile justice systems; service providers; and journalists.

If you work on policy, are new to the Cost-Benefit Knowledge Bank for Criminal Justice (CBKB) website, and wonder where you should start, we suggest the following materials:

  • Types of Economic Analysis tool: This describes the four most common types of analysis, including cost-benefit analysis (CBA), and describes the circumstances that call for the use of each one.
  • Cost savings or cost avoidance?” Our most popular blog post to date explains this critical—and practical—distinction from a budgetary perspective.
  • Four Questions for Jens Ludwig”:  In this guest blog post, Ludwig, an economist and the director of the University of Chicago Crime Lab, talks about his work, the implications of CBA for crime policy in the United States and in international development, and research by the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services.

Although three webinars are on this list, we don’t picture your first visit to the site lasting an entire workday. (We bet you didn’t plan on that, either.) Whenever we publish a webinar recording on, the accompanying blog post includes a summary of the content, the name and affiliation of any presenters, and a set of PowerPoint slides. Clicking through the blog posts and slides can give you a better idea of where you might want to dig in.

We welcome your questions and comments about CBA and criminal justice policy. Contact us via TwitterFacebook, or by e-mailing us at

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