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Recidivism of State Prisoners

Recidivism of State Prisoners Released in 2008 and 2012

January 2022

This webinar discusses findings from the BJS recidivism reports released in 2021 and the methodology used to conduct the studies. The first study on persons released from prison in 2012 included the largest number of states for a BJS recidivism study to date. The second study on persons released from prison in 2008 included the longest follow-up period for a BJS recidivism study. The webinar also examines trends in recidivism over time.

National Recidivism and Reentry Data Program

BJS studies are the primary source of national statistics on recidivism and reentry for policymakers and practitioners. BJS has conducted recidivism research throughout its history, with the first publications released in the 1980s. Since then, BJS has expanded the program to include more data sources and improved data collection systems. 

BJS uses a combination of surveys and administrative records to study recidivism and reentry. The administrative data include criminal history, probation and parole, state unemployment insurance, wage, and death records. Some research includes linking survey...