U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

NCJRS Virtual Library

The Virtual Library houses over 235,000 criminal justice resources, including all known OJP works.
Click here to search the NCJRS Virtual Library

Living Conditions, Social Exclusion and Recidivism Among Prison Inmates

NCJ Number
Journal of Scandinavian Studies in Criminology and Crime Prevention Volume: 4 Issue: 1 Dated: 2003 Pages: 57-83
Anders Nilsson
Date Published
27 pages
This study examined how deficiencies in welfare-related areas affected recidivism among a sample of Swedish prison inmates.
The living conditions of prison inmates have consistently been found to be worse than those of the general population. As such, this study questioned how living conditions impacted recidivism rates after release from prison. A sample of 346 Swedish prison inmates was questioned about welfare-related areas, such as education, employment, financial situation, social networks, and health. Data from the interviews were analyzed and then linked to data of re-offending during the first 3 years after release from prison. Findings indicated that deficiencies in welfare-related areas, especially education and employment, were correlated with recidivism. Moreover, the data revealed that the accumulation of different types of resource problems, above and beyond education and employment, affected recidivism rates within the first 3 years after release from prison. Finally, the data also indicated that the effect of living conditions and resource deficiencies on re-offending was mainly felt by those who had not previously served time in prison. The author asserts that time in prison reduces the opportunities to lead a conventional life, contributing to marginalization and social exclusion. The data should inform policymakers of the types of issues to focus on when developing recidivism programs. Tables, references