The Federal Sentencing Reporter was launched more than two decades ago by legal experts and scholars Daniel J. Freed and Marc L. Miller, in collaboration with the Vera Institute of Justice. It is the only academic journal in the United States that focuses on sentencing law, policy, and reform.

Vera and the Federal Sentencing Reporter share an approach to policy change that relies on information, analytical examination, and innovation. Rare among scholarly journals, the Federal Sentencing Reporter focuses—in its authorship and readership—on academics as well as practitioners. In its pages, conversations take place among judges, lawyers, policymakers, and scholars. The publication is an intellectual resource that people in the field turn to for solutions and that academics rely on to propose, learn about, and discuss new ideas. Each issue offers in-depth analysis on a wide range of topics related to sentencing policies and practices. Recent issues have examined California’s Realignment policy, chronicled trends in white collar sentencing, and provided a detailed look at federal drug sentencing law and policy.

The Federal Sentencing Reporter is published five times a year. For each issue, Vera posts on its web site the “Editor’s Observations” (a regular feature that highlights the themes of the issue), a selected article, and the table of contents. Other articles, subscription services, and archives are available through University of California Press

Volume: 27, Number: 1
October 2014

Gauging the Enduring Impact of Sentencing Reforms

Excerpted from the Editor's Notes: This issue of the Federal Sentencing Reporter focuses on correctional policies, particularly at the state level, examining if they should be influenced by practices in other countries. The underlying thread running through these articles highlights correctional approaches designed to provide inmates with more treatment and rehabilitation, so as to enhance public safety and decrease recidivism upon release.  Although prison officials were already contemplating various modifications, their thinking was further enhanced and sensitized through a study trip to visit German and Dutch prisons, described and analyzed in this Issue.

Editor's Observations
Human Dignity, Crime Prevention, and Mass Incarceration: A Meaningful, Practical Comparison Across Borders
Nora V. Demleitner, Editor,  Federal Sentencing Reporter, and Dean and Roy L. Steinheimer, Jr. Professor of Law, Washington and Lee University School of Law

Featured Article
Doing the Right Thing: The Evolving Role of Human Dignity in American Sentencing and Corrections

Alison Shames, Independent Consultant, formerly Associate Director, Center on Sentencing and Corrections, Vera Institute of Justice and Ram Subramanian, Publications Director, Center on Sentencing and Corrections, Vera Institute of Justice

Other articles in this issue
(available through University of California Press)

One Road to Prison Reform Runs Through Europe
Donald Specter, Director, Prison Law Office

Learning from European Punishment Practices—and from Similar American Practices, Now and In the Past
Richard S. Frase, Benjamin N. Berger Professor in Criminal Law, University of Minnesota Law School and Co-Director, Robina Institute of Criminal Law & Criminal Justice

Innovating Corrections Across the Pond
Kellie R. Wasko, Deputy Executive Director, Colorado Department of Corrections

Lessons in Transforming Lives in Prison
John Wetzel, Secretary of Corrections, Pennsylvania Department of Corrections

Differences That Make a Difference
Jӧrg Jesse, Director General, Prison and Probation Administration, Acts of Clemency, Ministry of Justice, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania

Sentencing and Prison Practices in Germany and the Netherlands: Implications for the United States
Ram Subramanian, Publications Director, Center on Sentencing and Corrections, Vera Institute of Justice and Alison Shames, Independent Consultant, formerly Associate Director, Center on Sentencing and Corrections, Vera Institute of Justice

Greetings of the Minister of Justice, Uta-Maria Kuder, on the occasion of the dinner with the U.S. American delegation on 19 February 2013 at the Castle of Schorrsow
Uta-Maria Kuder, Minister of Justice, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern

An Insight into Uganda’s New Sentencing Guidelines: A Replica of Individualization?
Juliet Kamuzze, Ph.D. Candidate, School of Law, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow

State Sovereignty and Federal Sentencing: Why de facto Consecutive Sentencing by the Bureau of Prisons Should Not Survive Bond v. United States
Stephen R. Sady, Chief Deputy Federal Public Defender, Oregon Federal Public Defender’s Office, Portland, Oregon

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For more years than we care to remember, politicians had just one choice when it came to criminal justice issues: they had to be “tough on crime.” The “faces” of that tough-on-crime era included both criminals who committed heinous crimes (such as...
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In the most recent issue of the Federal Sentencing Reporter, leaders of California’s criminal justice system comment on the state’s Realignment policy, which aims to reduce the prison population by transferring certain lower-level inmates to county...
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I met Rick Kern soon after I started working at Vera in 2008. Rick had a long-standing relationship with Vera, and he served as an associate with Vera’s Center on Sentencing and Corrections for many, many years. Rick was our “go-to guy” on just...
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Scholars, practitioners, and justice advocates have extensively examined the corrosive impact of mass incarceration on families and communities. The inclusion of family impact statements into the justice equation, as reported by Vera, signals a...
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Editor’s note: Rebekah Diller is deputy director of the Justice Program at the NYU School of Law’s Brennan Center for Justice. She responds here to “The Unintended Sentence of Criminal Justice Debt,” an article in the October issue of Federal...