University of Leicester
2016FoxGphd.pdf (2.68 MB)

The Rehabilitation Lottery: Exploring Delivery and Attitudes towards Non-accredited Programmes Delivered in a Private Prison Using a Case Study Approach

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posted on 2016-10-04, 09:35 authored by Gina Edel Fox
The ‘What works’ literature has revealed valuable information over the years regarding the effectiveness of prison programmes; however, the prison population and rate of reoffending within the United Kingdom still remains significantly high. The cost of reoffending to the taxpayer is estimated to be £9.5-13 billion per annum. Much research has been carried out on Offending Behaviour Programmes, which have obtained ‘Accreditation’ status from the Correctional Panel of Accreditation and as a result are implemented and delivered in many prisons throughout the country. The majority of these programmes mirror those created by the Canadian School of clinical and correctional psychologists in the 1980s, yet over 30 years later only minor alterations have been made while the prison population continues to grow. This doctoral research takes a step away from accredited programmes and instead considers interventions that are more up-to-date, less structured and lacking the ‘accreditation’ status. It draws on empirical research and takes a closer look at ‘nonaccredited’ programmes in particular. It applies a qualitative approach in exploring the views and opinions of those directly involved in the selection, facilitation and participation of these programmes. It outlines some of the key findings, which relate to the design and delivery of prison interventions and highlights the need for range, innovation and flexibility in the delivery of programmes, from one prison to another. It also discusses the areas that programme participants feel are most important in obtaining positive outcomes. Within the methodology section, the thesis takes into consideration the ‘overly complex’ process researchers face when attempting to gain access to establishments to carry out essential prison research. These time-consuming procedures and ‘hoops’ researchers have to go through put many PhD theses and other prison studies in jeopardy. Questions arise, then, about the need for so much ‘red tape’ and the reasons behind gatekeeper’s denial of access. The thesis concludes by arguing that where a prisoner is sent, what programmes are on offer, along with the motivations of the facilitators and the atmosphere created, are factors which significantly contribute to an offender’s journey towards rehabilitation and desistance from crime. It concludes that prison programme provision is a ‘Rehabilitation Lottery’.



Jewkes, Yvonne; Mawby, Rob

Date of award


Author affiliation

Department of Criminology

Awarding institution

University of Leicester

Qualification level

  • Doctoral

Qualification name

  • PhD



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