Citation Graham H (2017) The Dynamics of Innovation and Influencing Change in Probation and Criminal Justice. 3rd World Congress on Probation, Tokyo, Japan, 12.09.2017-14.09.2017.
Abstract This paper presentation considers some of the forms and functions of innovation in probation and community justice. It draws on applied examples and aspects of recent international research investigating ‘innovative justice’ (Graham and White, 2014, 2015, 2016; White and Graham, 2016; Graham, 2015a; 2015b) and is informed by aspects of a forthcoming (December 2017) Special Issue on innovation of the European Journal of Probation, a journal and Special Issue of which I have the privilege of being an Editor. Interdisciplinary conceptual insights are harnessed to critically reflect on the ethics of innovation in probation and community-based contexts, including work with charities and social enterprises. Not all that is new or seeking to influence change in criminal justice is effective, ethical or just, underscoring a critical need to analyse what is considered to constitute penal innovation – above and beyond consideration of novelty, popularity, visibility or managerialist notions of efficiency. For whom or according to whom is an idea or initiative innovative? What are its collateral consequences? How might an innovation not only promote community and civic engagement, but be more transformative in renewing the civility of civil society towards people with criminal convictions, ‘returning citizens’? How do innovative initiatives engender and build trust, cooperation, perceptions of procedural justice and legitimacy?Charting the contours of emerging innovations in the field of probation and community justice should not be divorced from considerations of professional ideological, penological, cultural and social influences that gave rise to such changes.