XWe have detected your location as outside the U.S/Canada, if you think this is wrong, you can choose your location.

Palgrave Macmillan

What Works in Therapeutic Prisons

Evaluating Psychological Change in Dovegate Therapeutic Community

ISBN 9781137306197
Publication Date July 2014
Formats Hardcover Paperback Ebook (EPUB) Ebook (PDF) 
Publisher Palgrave Macmillan

Uniquely examining the first purpose-built prison community of its kind, HMP Dovegate Therapeutic Community, this book assesses individual prisoners' progress through therapy and provides an evidence base to support investment into prison-based therapeutic communities.

Charting the process of change, the authors highlight the key essentials necessary for prisoners to address their motivations and criminal patterns of behaviour, revealing that strong therapeutic alliances and willingness to ask for help as well as offering help to others are critical.

The most comprehensive coverage of therapeutic communities to date, this book will be an important resource for students and practitioners working in prisons and with high-risk offenders, providing recommendations for building the best possible environment for prisoners to enhance their self-esteem, improve their behaviour and establish skills to desist.

Jennifer Brown is Visiting Professor and Co-Director of the Mannheim Centre for Criminology at the London School of Economics, UK and is a chartered forensic and occupational psychologist.
Sarah Miller is a Chartered Psychologist and registered Forensic Psychologist. She is currently living and working in Australia and has recently commenced a PhD at Bond University in Queensland.

Sara Northey is a Chartered Psychologist, currently working for Sussex Partnerships Secure and Forensic services at the Hellingly Centre medium secure unit, UK.

Darragh O'Neill is currently undertaking audit research into the National Health Service and is based in the School of Life and Medical Sciences at University College London, UK.

Preface; Roland Woodward
1. Aims and Overview
2. The 'What Works' Debate and the Fit of Prison-Based Democratic TCs
3. Controversies, Beginnings and Workings of the Dovegate TC
4. The Data
5. Personality Disorder
6. Changes over Time: The Psychometric Data
7. Experiential Perspectives from Within the TC: The Focus Groups
8. Attachments: The Multiple Sorting Task Procedure
9. After the TC: Post Residency Questionnaire, Interviews and psychometrics
10. Back in the Outside World: Case Studies of Former Residents on Release
11. Getting It: A Quantification of Long-Term Outcomes
12. Practice Issues and Research Overview


'This book gives terrific practical attention to the details of describing the project, remembering its history and context, exploring its methods, and raising issues on an increasingly complex level as the book evolves. It will be welcomed by its readership.' - Russ Immarigeon, Editor, Offender Programs Report, USA
"In this unique book an account of the vision, preparation, then trials and tribulations involved in establishing the UK's first therapeutic community prison in decades forms the background to a very readable narrative of the accompanying research programme from inception to outcome. Rising to the many challenges the researchers persevered with an innovative, multimethod, longitudinal and process- (as well as outcome-) oriented strategy. What has emerged is a richly detailed, "warts and all" portrayal of decisions, reality and ultimate vindication, with clear lessons and implications for future policy, practice and research in this field. This volume should be required reading for those with an interest in penal policy, therapeutic communities, personality disorder, processes of personal change and research in institutional contexts." - Adrian Needs, University of Portsmouth, UK
'The idea of a therapeutic community is a complex one, even more so in a prison environment. Evaluating its work and its effects is a challenging process. This book describes, in a highly engaging way, how such a community operated - and endeavoured to meet the needs of its members while also addressing its task of returning them to society less likely to offend than before. The book reports a searching evaluation of many facets of this. It is a genuine "demonstration project" showing how to combine a variety of research methods: the exploration of individual-level change is particularly welcome. Most important of all, the people at the centre of the story show vividly through. Their struggles to relate to others in new ways, to leave behind damaged pasts and strive for better futures, are tellingly reflected in these pages." - James Maquire, University of Liverpool, UK
'What Works in Therapeutic Prisons is the culmination of the seven-year research project undertaken at HMP Dovegate Therapeutic Community... The authors are frank in their discussion of the challenges they faced, from changes in leadership to ethical tensions. From the spirit of their work, at once pragmatic and optimistic, as well as their more technical insights, there is much to be learnt.' - Probation Journal
'The book provides an important contribution to those who wish to understand more about forensic therapeutic communities and be more informed about the role they provide within the criminal justice system. The book not only offers an in-depth analysis of the way participants experience their time in therapy but also examines the experiences of those post TC treatment and provides an account of some of the factors crucial in supporting the desistance process. It gives an insight into what helps promote and sustain a potent therapeutic culture, and reminds us of some of the difficulties and strains experienced by those attempting psychological change. It also offers a narrative which highlights the necessity of a critical and reflective approach to practice.' - Richard Shuker, Prison Service Journal
Add a review

Related titles