Quick Menu
The editorial team warmly welcome Mrs. Professor Lena Dominelli, and Mr. Professor Malcolm Payne, two prominent internationally social work personalities who have kindly accepted to be part of our journal’s International Advisory Board starting with issue no. 1/2010.
Review is indexed in ProQuest,EBSCO, Social Works Abstracts, CEEOL,Index Copernicus,SCIPIO,GESIS,IBSS and ERIH+

Review is accredited B+ by CNCSIS

Homepage > Archive > Numar: 4 > Restorative Justice, Social Capital and Desistance from Offending

 Restorative Justice, Social Capital and Desistance from Offending

  • Tim Chapman (Ulster University, Northern Ireland. E-mail:
  • Donna Murray (Youth Justice Agency, Northern Ireland. E-mail:

Restorative justice has been the primary approach towards young people who offend and their victims within the youth justice system in Northern Ireland since 2003. It has generally been evaluated as effective and an improvement over previous practices. However there is a small percentage of young people who persist in their offending and have participated in multiple restorative conferences without desisting from harmful behaviour. This affects public confidence in restorative justice and poses a challenge to the Youth Justice Agency. As a result, an innovative Priority Youth Offender Project was developed based upon research into desistance, operating under restorative values and principles and using an adaptation of circles of support and accountability. A sample of young people who participated in this project was studied. This article reports on the findings of the study which confirms that restorative processes can strengthen relationships, generate social capital and contribute to the process of desistance from offending.

Keywords: Restorative justice, social capital, desistance, circles of support and accountability