What happens when incidents result in a policy sector losing its legitimacy? When a malfunctioning policy sector receives so much negative public attention that it has to fight for its survival? This study describes three such cases in detail within the British and Dutch Prison Services, examining the incidents, the negative response of the media and Members of Parliament to these incidents, and the way in which policy-makers tried to deal with the crises. This book establishes under which conditions such crises led to reform.
'Sandra Resodihardjo's book is an outstanding example of how to do first class social science: it uses the closest, most scrupulous empirical research to illuminate big themes about how crisis produces policy reform. It will be of great interest well beyond the specialised field of researchers into prison policy.' Michael Moran, University of Manchester, UK 'In her finely crafted analysis of policy reform following prison escapes and cell shortages in the Netherlands and escapes and riots in Britain, Dr Resodihardjo demonstrates that the "crisis-reform" thesis does not follow a predictable route but can be influenced by many contingencies. A remarkable achievement in internationally comparative research.' Roy King, University of Cambridge, UK 'There is much to recommend in this book, a very strong feature of which is that the measurement of policy change is calculated beyond the all-too-typical measurements of punctuated equilibrium based on media and tone now utilized by many researchers. For this important reason, as well as the interesting and informative policy descriptions presented in this book, this book is well worth reading.' Public Administration 'This book provides an excellent resource for the various professionals working to improve parole systems. Both problems and possible resolutions are identified. International Criminal Justice 'This book provides an excellent resource for the various professionals working to improve parole systems. Both problems and possible resolutions are identified.' International Criminal Justice Review
Contents: Crisis and reform in the public sector; The crisis-reform thesis: how crises can lead to reform; 2 prison systems: pre-crisis descriptions; The Dutch prison service: Cell shortages and escapes (1992-1993); Riots and reform in England (1990-1991); The escapes from Whitemoor and Parkhurst (1994-1995); Recognizing patterns of reform; Alternative paths to reform; Appendices; References; Index.