Last week we announced the release of a new CBKB white paper, Advancing the Quality of Cost-Benefit Analysis for Justice Programs. Analysts, researchers, analysts, and criminologists will find useful information about cost-benefit analysis (CBA) methods, evaluation techniques, and justice-specific applications of this technique.
Even if you don’t plan to dive into the details, take a look at these six principles that serve as the paper’s foundation:
- Cost-benefit analysis is a decision tool, not a decision rule.
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.
This month we’ll feature a series of blog posts addressing misperceptions about cost-benefit analysis (CBA). On the blog, in the CBA toolkit, and in other materials, we’ve written about some concepts that frequently confuse people or are commonly misunderstood, such as:
- Cost avoidance and cost savings are not the same.
- Taxpayer benefits don’t always result in cost savings.
The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities and the American Civil Liberties Union recently released Improving Budget Analysis Of State Criminal Justice Reforms: A Strategy For Better Outcomes And Saving Money. The report analyzes how states prepare fiscal notes of sentencing and corrections legislation. Also known as fiscal impact analyses, fiscal notes report the budgetary impact of pending legislation and, when done well, can add critical information to the policy process.