IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Strategies to Productively Reincorporate the Formerly-Incarcerated into Communities: A Review of the Literature


  • Doleac, Jennifer

    () (Texas A&M University)


Two-thirds of those released from prison in the United States will be re-arrested within three years, creating an incarceration cycle that is detrimental to individuals, families, and communities. There is tremendous public interest in ending this cycle, and public policies can help or hinder the reintegration of those released from jail and prison. This review summarizes the rigorous evidence on the effectiveness of programs that aim to improve the reintegration and rehabilitation of the formerly-incarcerated. While there is a need for much more research on this topic, the existing evidence provides some useful guidance for decision-makers. The importance of evaluating existing and new strategies is also discussed.

Suggested Citation

  • Doleac, Jennifer, 2018. "Strategies to Productively Reincorporate the Formerly-Incarcerated into Communities: A Review of the Literature," IZA Discussion Papers 11646, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp11646

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Devah Pager, 2003. "The mark of a criminal record," Natural Field Experiments 00319, The Field Experiments Website.
    2. Kilmer, B. & Nicosia, N. & Heaton, P. & Midgette, G., 2013. "Efficacy of frequent monitoring with swift, certain, and modest sanctions for violations: Insights from south dakota's 24/7 sobriety project," American Journal of Public Health, American Public Health Association, vol. 103(1), pages 37-43.
    3. Anaïs Henneguelle & Benjamin Monnery & Annie Kensey, 2016. "Better at Home than in Prison? The Effects of Electronic Monitoring on Recidivism in France," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 59(3), pages 629-667.
    4. Amanda Y. Agan & Michael D. Makowsky, 2018. "The Minimum Wage, EITC, and Criminal Recidivism," NBER Working Papers 25116, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Jennifer L. Doleac, 2017. "The Effects of DNA Databases on Crime," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 9(1), pages 165-201, January.
    6. Osborne Jackson & Bo Zhao, 2017. "The effect of changing employers’ access to criminal histories on ex-offenders’ labor market outcomes: evidence from the 2010–2012 Massachusetts CORI Reform," Working Papers 16-30, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, revised 01 Feb 2017.
    7. Amanda Agan & Sonja Starr, 2016. "Ban the Box, Criminal Records, and Statistical Discrimination: A Field Experiment," Natural Field Experiments 00539, The Field Experiments Website.
    8. Dave, Dhaval M., 2016. "Causal effects of mental health treatment on education outcomes for youth in the justice systemAuthor-Name: Cuellar, Alison," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 54(C), pages 321-339.
    9. Georgiou, Georgios, 2014. "Does increased post-release supervision of criminal offenders reduce recidivism? Evidence from a statewide quasi-experiment," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 221-243.
    10. Erin Valentine & Cindy Redcross, 2015. "Transitional jobs after release from prison: effects on employment and recidivism," IZA Journal of Labor Policy, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 4(1), pages 1-17, December.
    11. A. D. Seroczynski & William N. Evans & Amy D. Jobst & Luke Horvath & Giuliana Carozza, 2016. "Reading for Life and Adolescent Re‐Arrest: Evaluating a Unique Juvenile Diversion Program," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 35(3), pages 662-682, June.
    12. Palmer, Caroline & Phillips, David C. & Sullivan, James X., 2019. "Does emergency financial assistance reduce crime?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 169(C), pages 34-51.
    13. Alison Evans Cuellar & Dhaval M. Dave, 2015. "Causal Effects of Mental Health Treatment on Education Outcomes for Youth in the Justice System," NBER Working Papers 21206, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Amanda Agan & Sonja Starr, 2018. "Ban the Box, Criminal Records, and Racial Discrimination: A Field Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 133(1), pages 191-235.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Johannes Buckenmaier & Eugen Dimant & Ann-Christin Posten & Ulrich Schmidt, 2020. "Efficient Institutions and Effective Deterrence: On Timing and Uncertainty of Formal Sanctions," CESifo Working Paper Series 8113, CESifo.
    2. Laura Jaitman, 2019. "Frontiers in the economics of crime: lessons for Latin America and the Caribbean," Latin American Economic Review, Springer;Centro de Investigaciòn y Docencia Económica (CIDE), vol. 28(1), pages 1-36, December.

    More about this item


    prisoner reentry; employment; recidivism;

    JEL classification:

    • K42 - Law and Economics - - Legal Procedure, the Legal System, and Illegal Behavior - - - Illegal Behavior and the Enforcement of Law
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • H76 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - Other Expenditure Categories
    • I0 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - General

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp11646. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Holger Hinte). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.