LLM Restorative Justice

Students studying in the libraryModule leader: Dr Katherine Doolin

Teaching and assessment (2017-18): Semester 1, 1 x 6,000 word essay

Module description:

Restorative justice has been advanced within criminal justice as an alternative way of responding to offending behaviour. A restorative justice approach aims to involve those most directly affected by crime – victims, offenders and communities – in working out how to deal with the aftermath of offending and restore the harm done. As such it is an approach to justice that can be distinguished in many ways from the traditional responses to crime – retributive and rehabilitative. The topic of restorative justice merits study because of the attention being given to this approach worldwide by practitioners, academics, policy-makers and governments. There has been a proliferation of legal and extra-legal programmes attempting to restore victims, encourage offenders to take responsibility for the harm caused, and reintegrate offenders into the community. In England and Wales, restorative justice initiatives have become the main way of responding to lower level offending by children and young people. In recent years, restorative justice processes are being used with adult offenders both in a probation context and in prisons.  

Seminar topics:

  • Introduction to restorative justice and key restorative processes
  • History and development of restorative justice
  • Defining restorative justice: core values and critical issues
  • Stakeholder participation: the role of the victim
  • Stakeholder participation: the role of the offender, community and state
  • The use of restorative justice as a response to offending in England and Wales
  • Restorative justice conferencing: case studies of youth justice conferencing in New Zealand and Northern Ireland
  • Restorative justice and offences of sexual and domestic violence
  • Restorative detention: the use of restorative justice in prison
  • Restorative justice after large-scale violence or oppression: examples of transitional justice