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The IJIS Factor is the IJIS Institute's blog that covers technology and information sharing and safeguarding topics, including national standards and initiatives.


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Exploring the Advisory Committees - Part III - Corrections

Posted By Alex McAdoo, Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Part one of this blog series discussed the importance of the IJIS Advisory Committees in fostering collaboration and dialogue between the public and private sectors, while the second blog described the work of the CJIS Advisory Committee. Blog three of our six-part series focuses on the Corrections Advisory Committee (CAC).

The IJIS CAC promotes partnerships and advances open dialogue among leading industry providers, corrections practitioners and the key practitioner organizations whose members represent local, state, and federal corrections focused initiatives. IJIS CAC practitioner organizations whose members collaborate both individually, and representing their respective organizations, include the American Corrections Association (ACA), Corrections Technology Association (CTA), American Parole and Probation Association (APPA), American Jail Association (AJA), and the Correctional Leadership Association (CLA, formerly known as ASCA). The 16 IJIS CAC members routinely:

  •  Evaluate proposed initiatives
  •  Identify opportunities for new or improved information sharing standards
  •  Develop white papers
  •  Publish corrections-specific standards documents
  •  Deliver workshops
  •  Sponsor national training events
  •  Provide further guidance on other corrections-related issues

The IJIS CAC has two working groups and one task force, working to advance specific goals within its mission. Currently, the Corrections Technology Provider Directory Working Group is developing a searchable product and services directory specific to the corrections industry. This new directory is modeled after the successful Courts Technology Provider Directory pioneered by the IJIS Courts Advisory Committee. Once the Corrections Provider Directory is operational, corrections agency staff can access it on the IJIS website, initiate searches for specific product/service categories, and receive a list of products/services by provider.

The IJIS CAC stood up a task force to help launch the IJIS Institute’s fourth Corrections Leadership Technology Forum. This biennial event brings together over eighty corrections leaders from across the nation for a three-day working session to address the latest challenges and technology developments affecting the corrections community overall. Attendees include state corrections directors / commissioners and secretaries and their Chief Information Officers (CIOs), local jail administrations and CIOs, and directors and administrations from within the probation, parole and community correction area along with their CIOs / Chief Technology Officers. The Forum covers various topics, such as technology for detecting contraband and other methods of interdiction, serving special needs populations, and addressing new and emerging technology and threats.  

In addition, the Corrections Information Technology Recognition Working Group was established to create an IJIS Corrections Information Technology Recognition program. This inaugural recognition honors a team achievement for the technical innovation between an industry partner(s) and one or more practitioner agencies that significantly contributed to the advancement of corrections information technology in the public sector. The recipient(s) of the new recognition will be announced at the upcoming IJIS National Symposium, February 26-27, 2020.

Other noteworthy IJIS CAC accomplishments include publishing the first document entitled the Value of Corrections Information Sharing, and in 2017, the updated version of the original 2004 document entitled Common Business Functions for Correctional Management Systems, and the latest published document entitled Corrections Tech 2020 – Technological Trends in Custodial & Corrections whitepaper. The IJIS CAC members have also participated in the IJIS led, BJA funded Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) Data Standard Work Group and served as subject matter experts in the IJIS workgroup responsible for the development of the national information sharing standard for State Automated Victim Information and Notification (SAVIN).

Committee members are also engaged in outreach activities that included participating in workshops at three recent training conferences, presenting at two international corrections conferences, and establishing a dialogue between IJIS and the International Corrections and Prisons Association (ICPA) regarding partnership opportunities.

Through these activities, the IJIS CAC expanded its outreach and exposure, enhanced the IJIS Institute’s effectiveness in serving its constituents, and contributed to improving the overall corrections mission in prisons, jails, and community corrections facilities. The IJIS CAC looks forward to publishing white papers that serve the industry and practitioners, delivering valuable corrections-focused workshops, conducting additional outreach activities, and identifying innovative ways to improve technology and information sharing in corrections.

For any questions regarding the IJIS Institute’s Corrections Advisory Committee, or to inquire about joining the Committee, please contact staff liaison, Kathy Gattin, at  

Tags:  community corrections  Corrections  corrections technology  Technology 

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APPA and World Congress Recap

Posted By Robert L. May II, Wednesday, August 5, 2015
Updated: Monday, August 3, 2015

Last month I attended the American Probation and Parole Association (APPA) 40th Annual Summer Institute in conjunction with the World Congress of Correction in Los Angeles. APPA conducts the largest national training institute for community corrections. The IJIS Institute is an APPA Affiliate and, therefore, has a seat on its Board of Directors. One of the many notable events at the 40th Annual Institute occurred at the Board of Directors meeting where APPA Executive Director Carl Wicklund announced he would be stepping down as APPA Executive Director effective 31 July 2015 after nearly 20 years at APPA. Carl stated that it is time to turn the reins of APPA over to new leadership.

The APPA Training Institute provided an opportunity for discussions on the latest theories and examine the newest technologies. One of the sessions most relevant to IJIS involved a presentation titled

Improve Offender Management in the Cloud with Big Data and discussed how making use of big data residing in the cloud holds great potential to provide valuable information for use in conjunction with more traditional data sources to improve management outcomes. Presenters talked about the kinds of information that can be harvested as a new tool in the challenging world of probation and parole and an overview of what the technology is, how it is being used, and in what ways it can be used to support the specific business objectives. Two IJIS members – Iveta Topalova from Microsoft and John Beck from Esri – presented this session along with APPA Executive Director Carl Wicklund. The session focused on the use of geospatial mapping and various use cases of how 44% of big data applications will be used for offender risk management.

The Second World Congress on Community Corrections immediately followed the APPA Institute. Highlights included:

  • Laurence Steinberg, Ph.D., Distinguished University Professor, Laura H. Carnell Professor of Psychology at Temple University who talked about the Age of Opportunity: Lessons from the New Science of Adolescence.
  • Jennifer L. Skeem, Ph.D., Professor and Associate Dean of Research, School of Social Welfare at University of California, Berkeley, spoke about What Works for Justice-involved People with Mental Illness.
  • Fergus McNeill, Professor of Criminology and Social Work, University of Glasgow, Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research Glasgow, Scotland, spoke about Desistance and International Offender Case Management and the Impact on Supervision Strategies.

Japan hosted a session on Juvenile and Family Justice Innovations in Japanese Community Corrections. I found one of the most interesting sessions to be one by the United Kingdom on the Transformation of the Delivery of Probation Services in England and Wales. Jim Barton, Deputy Director of Development and Business Change at the UK National Probation Services, National Offender Management Service, England, talked about the process they have undertaken to radically restructure probation services. Before the transformation, 35 organizations were doing a good job and on budget providing probation services across England and Wales. The initiative only involves adult supervision and 170k are under community supervision and 70k are on prerelease. Another 86k are in 106 public prisons and 14 private prisons. The transformation of contracting with 21 community rehabilitation companies was done to save money and the reoffending rates were too high. The new effort privatizes probation services with a different firm in each jurisdiction and uses payment by results to incentivize the providers to use evidence-informed practices. Ten quality criteria are used to assess needs and responsivity. The priorities of the transformation are to enhance public safety and support the offender using a balanced approach of enforcement and offender support. A key to this new approach is a shift away from telling providers what to do and instead allowing the various providers to decide in order to allow for innovation. Prisoners were moved around the country to get them into facilities closer to home. A portal was created to replicate and share offender information.

I could not end this blog post without saying something about Carl’s contributions to the field of corrections over the past 20 years. On behalf of the IJIS Institute, I want to thank Carl for his steadfast friendship and support and his significant contributions to the field of corrections, community corrections, law enforcement on so many levels, and through so very many projects and initiatives. His contributions to the Global Advisory Committee, the N-DEx working group, and so many other work groups have truly helped shape criminal justice in this country. Thanks so much for all you have done and all you will do. I know you have plenty of contributions yet to come in the next phase of your career.

Tags:  APPA  community corrections  corrections  probation  World Congress 

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