Brief A Framework for Implementing Jail-Based Technology Projects
Lessons Learned from the Safety and Justice Challenge Innovation Fund
Kierra B Jones, Evelyn F. McCoy, Jesse Jannetta
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To reduce jail use more generally, jurisdictions are increasingly incorporating technology in multifaceted approaches to reducing jail populations. Though innovative technological advancements can introduce efficiencies to certain jail-based practices, scholars and activists have raised concerns that some technologies, such as electronic monitoring and algorithmic risk-prediction instruments, may introduce or in some instances exacerbate inequities. Many of the projects supported through the Safety and Justice Challenge (SJC) Innovation Fund have involved technological strategies for addressing jail use. This brief, part of a series highlighting work supported by the SJC Innovation Fund, presents lessons from these varied projects and lays out a framework for jurisdictions, criminal legal system agencies, and organizations working on jail reform to consider when developing technological strategies to address jail issues. Practitioners and policymakers must consider the limitations and unintended consequences of implementing technology-oriented projects, including their potential for perpetuating and reinforcing racial and ethnic disparities in the criminal legal system and harming the communities they are intended to serve.

Research Areas Crime, justice, and safety
Tags Structural racism in research, data, and technology Alternatives to incarceration Mass incarceration
Policy Centers Justice Policy Center
Research Methods Quantitative data analysis
States Georgia Minnesota Oklahoma Pennsylvania California Wisconsin