Youth Justice Board research and analysis


The YJB is committed to developing and expanding research into what works in preventing and reducing youth crime. Our approach to research aims to strengthen our effective practice evidence base and meet our corporate targets and effective practice agenda, through:

  • assessing of the effectiveness of interventions
  • improving understanding of the causes of youth crime
  • obtaining comprehensive knowledge of all findings on youth offending
  • identifying gaps in the research knowledge base
  • making and maintaining links with the academic research community
  • communicating research findings to managers and practitioners.

Informing effective practice

For information about the YJB’s approach to effective practice, please go to the Effective Practice page.

To contact the YJB’s research team, email

The YJB is not able to offer grants for external projects and suggest that those interested in securing funding for youth justice research apply to the ESRC grant scheme [opens in new window].

Academic research

The YJB welcomes and encourages academic research and debate that will influence policy and practice at a national and local level. Although we are not able to offer grants for external projects we seek to support universities and other organisations interested in making bids to research councils, or conducting in-house research in areas of policy and practice that are key to the youth justice system’s future development. We will consider each proposal on its individual merits and require the following two pre-requisites for the YJB to support external research.

  • The research adheres to the YJB and RDS/NOMS research standards for impact and reconviction studies, it adheres to the Cabinet Office’s ‘Quality in Qualitative Research’ standards if a qualitative study and if a systematic review, it is conducted in accordance with the Campbell Collaboration guidelines.
  • The area of research will enhance the existent knowledge base or fill gaps in knowledge.

The research team is happy to discuss the YJB’s key priorities with those who are interested in gaining our support for such bids or research, with a view to delivery of a final report to the YJB.

Recent research

All research, old and new, is available in the research section of the publications area.

Our latest research reports are set out below.

What Happens to Persistent and Serious Young Offenders When They Grow Up: A Follow-Up Study of the First Recipients of Intensive Supervision and Surveillance
Date: 11 July 2013

This report revisits the cohort (who are now adults) from the original evaluations of the Intensive Supervision and Surveillance Programme (ISSP) published in 2004 and 2005. The report combines a long-term reconviction study of 1,789 ISSP cases and 704 comparison cases, and life-history interviews with nine individuals previously subject to ISSP.
The Knife Crime Prevention Programme: Process Evaluation
Date: 20 June 2013

This process evaluation considers the implementation and delivery of the Knife Crime Prevention Programme within a sample of youth offending teams, examining participants’ knowledge, perceptions and attitudes to knife crime, and staff attitudes to the programme.
Young People and the Secure Estate: Needs and Interventions
Date: 15 March 2013

Research examining the identified needs of children and young people within the secure estate (including secure children's homes, secure training centres and young offender institutions) and the interventions they received.

Preventing Religious Radicalisation and Violent Extremism: A Systematic Review of the Research Evidence

Process Evaluation of Preventing Violent Extremism Programmes for Young People
Date: 16 November 2012

The aims of these reports, which were commissioned by the YJB, were to:

  • collate and assess the existing evidence relating to preventing violent extremism
  • describe and evaluate the implementation of funded preventing violent extremism programmes within the youth justice system
  • identify emerging good and promising practice by relating the findings of the process evaluation to the evidence identified in the literature review.   
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