CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Hyatt, Chanenson & Bergstrom on Risk Assessments and Cost-Benefit Analysis in Sentencing

Jordan Hyatt Steven L. Chanenson and Mark H. Bergstrom (University of Pennsylvania - Jerry Lee Center of Criminology , Villanova University School of Law and Pennsylvania State University) have posted Reform in Motion: The Promise and Perils of Incorporating Risk Assessments and Cost-Benefit Analysis into Pennsylvania Sentencing (Duquesne University Law Review, Vol. 49, 2011) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

Actuarial risk assessment and cost-benefit analyses have become increasingly commonplace in many areas of criminal justice. The integration of these tools in sentencing represents a natural and logical next step. In Pennsylvania, the pace of this development has recently accelerated, as reform legislation now mandates the inclusion of actuarial methodologies into the sentencing architecture. This article considers the promises and the perils of this integration in light of Pennsylvania’s sentencing structure. The authors conclude by presenting four key questions that legislators in Pennsylvania- as well as other jurisdictions beginning to addresses the use of empirical data in sentencing- should consider before implementation.

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