1. Interventions at the broad local, state, or national level where the program scope encompasses a macro unit and there is virtually no potential for assigning units to different intervention conditions.

    • An Empirical Analysis of LOJACK (Steven Levitt)

    • Racial Bias in Motor Vehicle Searches (Petra Todd)

    • Discussant (John V. Pepper)

After the research case studies in each category were presented, their implications for conducting high-quality evaluations were discussed. A final panel at the end of the workshop then discussed the infrastructure requirements for strong evaluations.

  • Infrastructure Requirements for Consumption (and Production) of Strong Evaluations (Lawrence Sherman)

  • Recommendations for Evaluation (Robert Moffitt)

  • Bringing Evidence-Based Policy to Substance Abuse and Criminal Justice (Jon Baron)

Papers presented at the workshop are provided on the Committee on Law and Justice Website at http://www7.nationalacademies.org/claj/.

The intent of this report is not to summarize the workshop but, rather, to draw upon its contents to highlight the major considerations in developing and implementing evaluation plans for criminal justice programs. In particular, the report is organized around five interrelated questions that require thoughtful analysis in the development of any evaluation plan, with particular emphasis on impact evaluation:

  1. What questions should the evaluation address?

  2. When is it appropriate to conduct an impact evaluation?

  3. How should an impact evaluation be designed?

  4. How should the evaluation be implemented?

  5. What organizational infrastructure and procedures support high-quality evaluation?

In the pages that follow, each of these questions is examined and advice is distilled from the workshop presentations and discussion, and from subsequent committee deliberations, for answering them in ways that will help improve the evaluation of criminal justice programs. The intended audience for this report includes NIJ, the workshop sponsor and a major funder of criminal justice evaluations, but also other federal, state, and local agencies, foundations, and other such organizations that plan, sponsor, or administer evaluations of criminal justice programs.

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