Source: (2000) B.A. thesis (honors), Griffith University, School of Criminology and Criminal Justice.

Restorative justice has been championed as a new way to understand and respond to criminal wrongdoing; many initiatives around the world seek to develop and apply restorative principles and practices. However, to date there have been relatively few evaluative studies of restorative programs. With that in mind, Venables examines the restorative practice of family group conferencing, with particular focus on the experience of victims who participated in a conference. Her project used data from the South Australian Juvenile Justice (SAJJ) research project, a longitudinal study of how different participants evaluated the conferencing process. This thesis presents the method and results of her study: a literature review of restorative justice; a literature review of empirical findings on conferencing; the scope, method, and data of the SAJJ project; the results of the initial impact of a conference on victims, and the results one year later; and discussion of her findings. In addition to statistical tables throughout the thesis, several appendices supply key statistics and evaluative measures used in the research on victims’ experiences of conferencing.

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