Led by the Institute of Behavioral Research director, Kevin Knight, a study team will conduct outcome research of the Federal Bureau of Prison’s (BOP) programs to assess their impact on post-release recidivism and societal adjustment, as well as on institutional adjustment and psychosocial functioning during incarceration. Knight says, “Currently providing custody for more than 155,000 inmates across 37 states, the BOP is the largest prison system within the U.S. Over the next five years, our findings and recommendations will be provided to the BOP regarding potential strategies to improve the overall delivery and effectiveness of their programs.”
The BOP seeks to protect public safety by ensuring that federal offenders serve their sentences in facilities that are safe, humane, cost-efficient and secure. Reporting a 34% rate of recidivism, which is half the rate of many large state departments of corrections, the agency provides a multitude of reentry programs designed to ensure successful transition to the community. “At this time, the agency offers the Residential Drug Abuse Program, the Non-Residential Drug Abuse Program, the Medication Assisted Treatment Program, Drug Education Program and an Anger Management Program,” Knight says.
Since joining IBR in 1991, Knight has focused on conducting research with substance-using, justice-involved populations. Additionally, he has served as principal investigator on research projects funded by the National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Justice and the National Institute of Corrections. The team of research scientists working on this project is made up of Drs. Wayne Lehman, George Joe, Jen Pankow, Jenny Becan, Yang Yang, Randi Proffitt Leyva and Jenni Lux.