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SUP-701: Crime and Criminal Justice - Reform in Global Context

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Harvard Kennedy School

SUP-701: Crime and Criminal Justice - Reform in Global Context

Description: This workshop involves students in the comparative study of the operation of criminal justice systems, examining strategies for controlling crime and delivering justice across many different countries. The course combines reading, lecture, and discussion with work in small groups on a current project of practical reform in one or more of the governments collaborating with the Kennedy School's Program in Criminal Justice Policy & Management. Contingent on funding, students may be able to conduct field work in support of these projects over Spring Break. The course first reviews reforms underway in China, Turkey, and Russia, and the response to crises in criminal justice the United Kingdom and United States. It then examines the governance and measurement of criminal justice in Jamaica, Nigeria, and Ethiopia, and the practices of international development organizations for promoting justice, safety, and rule of law. Students with prior course work or professional experience in criminal law or procedure, law enforcement, criminal justice, or criminology will be in a strong position to take full advantage of the course material, but the workshop is open to all students. 

Faculty Todd Foglesong

Source: At http://www.hks.harvard.edu/degrees/teaching-courses/course-listing/sup-701 (accessed 20 January 2014)

 

Teaching Topics Addressed in this Course, Organized by Public Management Subject

[TO BE DEVELOPED]

 

Additional Course Description in Syllabus

The course investigates the political power of crime, justice, and safety in the world today by studying representations of the experiences of crime and justice, the ideas and ambitions of public officials and other civic leaders, and the practices of administering criminal law and procedure in a range of countries. We will examine contemporary politics of criminal justice reform in China, Turkey, and the United Kingdom; the practices of international development organizations for promoting justice, safety, and rule of law in "developing" and "conflict-afflicted countries;" and domestic efforts to improve criminal justice in Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Jamaica, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone. Depending on the availability of funding, students may have an opportunity to conduct original field work in a foreign country over spring break on the design of an indicator of justice or safety that corresponds to the development goals being considered by the United Nations for the "post-2015 agenda."

The course is a workshop, involving students in applied analyses of systems for producing and measuring justice and safety in several countries. It combines reading, discussion, and work in small groups to support the efforts of government officials and NGO leaders in foreign countries to measure justice and safety. Students with prior course work or professional experience in criminal law or procedure, law enforcement, criminal justice, or criminology will be in a strong position to take full advantage of the course material, but the workshop is open to all students.

We will try to answer three questions in this course: 1) What happens to important ideas about justice and safety, law and democracy, equality and fairness when they are measured, or not, in conventional ways? 2) What explains the promiscuous use of "indicators" in international campaigns to improve justice and safety in foreign states? 3) What role, if any, can or should outsiders play in the reform of justice and safety when they do not share equal responsibility for the success or failure of their ideas?

The course presumes students will at some point in the future participate in the governance of justice and safety of some country – for example, by writing about or advocating certain ideas, analyzing or promoting changes in public policies, administering basic services in government and civil society, or practicing law. The course is designed to strengthen skills that are useful in such work, including:

  • Questioning the Veracity of Your Own Ideas
  • Interrogating and Interpreting the Results of Others’ Research
  • Respecting the "Political Economy" of Reform in Criminal Justice
  • Recognizing Big Ideas in Ordinary Administrative Action
  • Helping Others Achieve Their Own Goals

Commentary by the Atlas editors: The class titles  provide candidates for topic titles to be developed by the Atlas:

  • The Measurement, Management, and Meaning of Criminal Justice Today
  • Dark Matter: The Political and Moral Economy of Punishment
  • Regarding the Death Penalty in China
  • International Campaigns to Eliminate Violence Against Women
  • The Response to Violence Against Women in the United Kingdom
  • Contemporary Politics of Crime and Policing: New York City as a Barometer
  • The Measurement of Safety and Community Policing in Jamaica and Ethiopia
  • The Mania for Measurement in law, justice, safety, and rights.
  • Prosecution Reform in Nigeria and Sierra Leone
  • Justice Reform in Bangladesh: Responding to Victims of Violence Against Women
  • The Response to Violence Against Women in the United States
  • The Politics of Justice Reform in Turkey Today

Page created by: Ian Clark, 20 January 2014. The content presented on this page, except in the Commentary, is drawn directly from the source(s) cited above, and consists of direct quotations or close paraphrases.

 

 Syllabus

SUP-701.pdfSUP-701

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School of Public Policy and Governance