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Applying complexity theoryWhole systems approaches to criminal justice and social work$
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Aaron Pycroft and Clemens Bartollas

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9781447311409

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: January 2015

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447311409.001.0001

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Youth Justice: From Linear Risk Paradigm to Complexity

Youth Justice: From Linear Risk Paradigm to Complexity

Chapter:
(p.113) Six Youth Justice: From Linear Risk Paradigm to Complexity
Source:
Applying complexity theory
Author(s):

Stephen Case

Kevin Haines

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781447311409.003.0007

Chapter Six addresses the issue of developing risk assessment tools from a post-positivist complexity perspective and in so doing, challenges the dominance of positivist, reductionist, deterministic and linear, risk-based models of understanding and responding to young people’s offending behaviour within the field of youth justice in England and Wales. The positivist risk paradigm is contrasted with evolving arguments to integrate more complexity, contextuality and multidimensionality into youth justice theory, research, policy and practice. By arguing from a post-positivist perspective, the reductionist nature of risk-based youth justice is dissected and the chapter advances an alternative approach using two central elements of Complex Systems Science.

Keywords:   risk assessment, post-positivist, reductionist, deterministic, linear, risk-based, complexity, contextuality, multidimensionality

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