Source: (2006) Papers presented at the Fourth Conference of the European Forum for Restorative Justice, “Restorative justice: An agenda for Europe”, Barcelona, Spain, 15-17 June 2006.

This presentation intends to discuss whether the concepts of moral development, neutralisation, shame and social bonds and their possible interconnections can help us to understand the impact of restorative justice, and if so, how. The main argument of the presentation is based on two presumptions: firstly, mapping the possible interrelations among offenders’ moral development, their use of neutralisation techniques, their shame feelings and shaming mechanisms from their social environments, and finally their social bonds can be highly beneficial in developing effective responses to wrong-doing on both individual and systemic levels. Secondly, restorative justice with its personalised way of dealing with conflicts has the potential to beneficially influence offenders’ as well as their community’s attitudes towards the effective reintegration of rule-breakers. (excerpt)