We encourage you to explore Vera's extensive resource library, built up by decades of expert research, analysis, and real-world application. Vera produces a wide variety of resources about our work, including publications, podcasts, and videos, dating from our founding in 1961 to the present. You can search these resources using the filters below to sort by type of resource, project, or topic. Enter part of the title in the search box to look for a specific resource.  

Latest Resources

01/04/2013

Watch Elizabeth Drake, senior research associate at the Washington State Institute for Public Policy, and Valerie Levshin, a former policy analyst at the Vera Institute of Justice, discuss the role of evaluation in cost-benefit studies. Before starting a cost-benefit analysis of a criminal justice policy or program, you need to know: Does the initiative work? This training is designed for people interested in meta-analysis and/or conducting cost-benefit studies of criminal justice programs and policies.

01/04/2013

Craig Prins, executive director of the Oregon Criminal Justice Commission, and Sarah Galgano, policy analyst at the Vera Institute of Justice, discuss how to use cost-benefit analysis (CBA) to inform justice policy decisions. Drawing on examples from Craig's work in Oregon, the presentation explores the role of CBA in policy decisions as well as questions policymakers should ask about CBA results.

01/04/2013

This webinar provides the basics of reading a cost-benefit report. Gary VanLandingham, director of the Pew Center on the States' Results First project, and Joshua Rinaldi, policy analyst at the Vera Institute of Justice, review a recent cost-benefit analysis and highlight the most important features to look for when reading this type of study.

12/17/2012

This is the last in a four-part series discussing findings from The Anatomy of Discretion, a Vera Institute study of factors that influence prosecutors’ decisions in criminal cases. In this part, Professor Anthony C. Thompson discusses the balance between strength of evidence and other considerations. Thompson is Professor of Clinical Law at New York University, has supervised a prosecution clinic in which students maintain real case loads, and is the author of It Takes a Community to Prosecute. In other podcasts in this series, one of the study’s authors summarizes its main findings; a prosecutor discusses the effects of resource constraints; and a federal judge discusses the balance between individualized treatment of defendants and consistency in decision making across similar cases.

12/17/2012

This is the third in a four-part series discussing findings from The Anatomy of Discretion, a Vera Institute study of factors that influence prosecutors’ decisions in criminal cases. In this part, Judge Theodore A. McKee discusses the balance between individualized treatment of defendants and consistency in decision making across similar cases. McKee is the chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, and previously served on the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas in the First Judicial District of Pennsylvania. In other podcasts in this series, one of the study’s authors summarizes its main findings; a prosecutor discusses the effects of resource constraints; and a law professor discusses the balance between strength of evidence and other considerations.

12/17/2012

This is the second in a four-part series discussing findings from The Anatomy of Discretion, a Vera Institute study of factors that influence prosecutors’ decisions in criminal cases. In this part, prosecutor Anne J. Swern discusses the effects of resource constraints. Swern is First Assistant District Attorney for Kings County, NY, and serves on the board of directors and the executive committee of the National District Attorneys Association. In other podcasts in this series, one of the study’s authors summarizes its main findings; a federal judge discusses the balance between individualized treatment of defendants and consistency in decision making across similar cases; and a law professor discusses the balance between strength of evidence and other considerations.

12/17/2012

This is the first in a four-part series discussing findings from The Anatomy of Discretion, a Vera Institute study of factors that influence prosecutors’ decisions in criminal cases. In this part, Professor Don Stemen talks with Vera Director Michael Jacobson about the study’s main findings. Stemen is author of numerous works on sentencing and corrections policies, sentencing guidelines, mandatory treatment for drug offenders, and racial disparities in prosecution and sentencing. In other podcasts in this series, a prosecutor discusses the effects of resource constraints; a federal judge discusses the balance between individualized treatment of defendants and consistency in decision making across similar cases; and a law professor discusses the balance between strength of evidence and other considerations.

12/17/2012

Prosecuting attorneys enjoy exceptionally broad discretion in making decisions that influence criminal case outcomes. They make pivotal decisions throughout the life of a case with little public or judicial scrutiny. With support from the National Institute of Justice, the Vera Institute of Justice undertook research to better understand how prosecutors make decisions. Vera researchers combined statistical analyses with qualitative analyses, examining initial case screening and charging decisions, plea offers, sentence recommendations, and post-filing dismissals for multiple offense types in two moderately large prosecutors’ offices. In addition to a technical report, the study produced a summary report and four podcasts.

 

Reports  Podcasts
> Technical report > Interview with Don Stemen
> Summary report > Interview with Anne J. Swern
> Fact Sheet > Interview with Judge Theodore A. McKee
  > Interview with Anthony C. Thompson

 


This project was supported by Award No. 2009-IJ-CX-0040 awarded by the National Institute of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication/program/exhibition are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the Department of Justice.

12/12/2012

Vera Institute of Justice President and Director Michael Jacobson submitted written testimony to a hearing titled “Ending the School-to-Prison Pipeline,” held on December 12, 2012 by the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights, chaired by Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois. Jacobson discusses the existing literature showing that zero-tolerance school discipline policies and the negative outcomes they engender by criminalizing even minor disciplinary infractions disproportionately affect minority students. And he describes research Vera launched in January 2012 to examine the connection between school disciplinary policies—in particular, those that approximate a zero-tolerance approach—and crime and delinquency outcomes among youth exposed to them.

12/01/2012

Just 'Cause is the quarterly newsletter of the Vera Institute of Justice and is produced by the Communications Department. This issue includes the following articles:

  • "Translating Stop, Question, and Frisk Numbers into Neighborhood Impact," by Melissa Cipollone; 
  • "Cracking the Case on How Prosecutors Think," by Alice Chasan;
  • From Vera's Director: "Research Yields Surprises and Solutions," by Michael Jacobson;
  • Harold Hongju Koh Delivers Vera's 2012 Justice Address;
  • Investing in Justice: Vera's Seventh Annual Benefit;
  • Q&A with Jim Parsons, director of the Substance Use and Mental Health Program, interview by Alice Chasan; 
  • News & Events; Alumna Profile: Fiza Quraishi;
  • Neil A. Weiner Research Speaker Series

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