April focus: What’s on our radar screen

by , April 4, 2012

During the month of April, we’ll blog about things we’re reading (and watching and listening to) on the subject of criminal justice and cost-benefit analysis. We always want to hear from those of you who are doing this work, but that’s especially true when it comes to this month’s topic. Your comments and suggestions will benefit our growing community of practice throughout the United States and beyond.

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CBKB Updates the Victim Costs Tool

by , October 13, 2011

Crime victims may experience substantial financial, psychological, and physical harm. In recent years, economists have placed a dollar value on these harms to measure the victim costs of crime. CBKB’s victim costs tool defines victim costs, describes the methods used for estimating them, provides cost estimates from recent studies, and discusses the role of victim costs in cost-benefit analysis.

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Watch CBKB’s webinar on “Demystifying Victim Costs”

by , July 27, 2011

Thanks to all who attended our webinar on demystifying victim costs. 125 participants from 34 states and the Netherlands participated in the live webinar on July 25, 2011. You can watch the recorded webinar and see the PowerPoint slides below.

Many thanks to Tina Stanford, director of the New York State Office of Victim Services, and Kathryn McCollister, assistant professor at the University of Miami, School of Medicine, for lending their expertise to this presentation.

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Four questions for Mark Cohen

by , July 5, 2011

This post is part of our “Four questions” guest blog series that highlights the people and organizations in the growing community of practice around cost-benefit analysis (CBA) and justice policymaking. We’re grateful to Mark Cohen, the Vice President for Research and Senior Fellow at Resources for the Future.

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Cost-benefit analysis and crime control: An interview with John Roman

by , May 27, 2011

John Roman, senior research associate at the Urban Institute and co-editor of Cost-Benefit Analysis and Crime Control, explains why cost-benefit analysis (CBA) is an important decision-making tool for legislators. In this interview with the Urban Institute Press, Roman describes the practical application of CBA in several states and discusses the methodological challenges of cost-benefit work, specifically as it applies to crime control.

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Selections from the CBKB reference database

by , April 15, 2011

With more than 400 cost-benefit analysis (CBA)–related resources in our reference database, we thought it would be useful to highlight a few publications we frequently use and recommend. This month we’ve selected five publications to help get you situated with CBA. Some specifically address criminal justice issues, while others cover cost-benefit methods more generally.

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Guest blog post: Measuring victim costs to inform justice policy: What is the cost of not sleeping?

by , March 31, 2011

Susan Xenarios is the director of the Crime Victims Treatment Center at St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital in New York. She is also the co-chairperson for the Downstate Coalition for Crime Victims and a member of the Advisory Council for the New York State Crime Victims Board.

After more than 30 years working with people who have survived violent crime, I’m not shy about confronting victimization issues head on.

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Measuring the benefits to victims and the Prison Rape Elimination Act

by , March 30, 2011

Victim costs and benefits play an important role in policymaking, as can currently be seen in the discussions around the proposed National Standards to Prevent, Detect, and Respond to Prison Rape. The standards proposed by the Attorney General, pursuant to the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003 (PREA), are available in the Federal Register, and additional materials regarding PREA are available on the Department of Justice (DOJ) website.

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New tool on cost-benefit analysis and victim costs

by , March 18, 2011

CBKB’s cost-benefit analysis (CBA) toolkit can help you understand and perform cost-benefit studies of criminal justice initiatives. The Victim Costs tool, one of 10 tools in the toolkit, discusses how to apply victim costs in a CBA.

A comprehensive CBA of an initiative that affects crime, whether directly or indirectly, needs to take into account victim costs.

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A framework for understanding victim costs

by , March 11, 2011

CBKB recently convened a roundtable of experts at the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences annual meeting to discuss the facts, questions, and debates surrounding the measurement and use of victim costs. We thank Mark Cohen of Resources for the Future, Susan Howley of the National Center for Victims of Crime, and Joel Rosch of the Center for Child and Family Policy at Duke University for participating in this roundtable.

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CBKB’s March Focus: Victim Costs

by , March 2, 2011

Crime costs American society more than $1.7 trillion each year. Taxpayers pick up the bill for government spending on police, courts, and corrections, while crime victims and their families bear additional costs. Some costs – for example, medical care, lost property, and lost earnings – are tangible, meaning that they impose a direct financial disadvantage on victims.

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Victim Costs

by , September 1, 2010

Crime victims may experience substantial financial, psychological, and physical harm. In recent years, economists have placed a dollar value on these harms to measure the victim costs of crime. This document defines victim costs, describes the methods used for estimating them, provides cost estimates from recent studies, and discusses the role of victim costs in cost-benefit analysis.

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