Source: (2012) Critical Criminology Journal 20:1-7

In restorative justice, crime is recognised fundamentally as a violation of people and relationships, rather than as a violation of law (Zehr 1990). When criminal justice systems shift to framing crime in this way, there is a consequent recognition that an appropriate response to crime is to allow those affected by crime to discuss the event and arrive at a consensus about reparation (Latimer et al. 2005). With the increasing incorporation of restorative justice approaches and processes into mainstream criminal justice systems, researchers have recognised the need for thorough evaluations of the impact of restorative justice on various important outcomes, such as recidivism rates and participants’ percep- tions that restorative justice procedures and their outcomes are fair and satisfactory. A wide and varied body of restorative justice research has been developing to meet this challenge over the past two decades, including program evaluations (Trimboli 2000), literature reviews (Braithwaite 1999), and meta-analyses (Latimer et al. 2005). (Excerpt)