National Projects

Models for Change Initiative

The Center continues to serve as the Technical Research Center to the MacArthur Foundation's juvenile justice reform efforts in Pennsylvania, Illinois, Louisiana, and Washington. The goals of Models for Change include: 1) develop useful and responsive models of documentation and assessment of efforts; 2) document and assess the planning and implementation phases of targeted areas of improvement; 3) provide baselines and measure intermediate outcomes of efforts at the state and pilot levels and on five key "vital sign" outcomes and assessing the impact; and 4) develop a toolkit for planning, implementing, and measuring model systems efforts.

Currently, the Center is developing a national Juvenile Justice Geography, Practice and Statistics (JJGPS) web-portal to provide state policy makers and system stakeholders with information describing the landscape of reform in the states to use both as a platform for inspiring change and finding solutions that have been applied in other places. In a 50-state landscape that is highly decentralized and ever-shifting, the juvenile justice JJGPS will become an invaluable resource for system reform and legacy of the 10-years plus of the MacArthur Foundation's Models for Change investment in systems reform.

Visit the Models for Change project page to learn more.

National Juvenile Court Data Archive

The Archive annually collects more than one million automated case records from more than 2,100 juvenile courts representing 80% of the juvenile population. Currently the Archive houses over 25 million records dating back to the 1970s. These records are the basis for the annual Juvenile Court Statistics reports (a reporting series dating back to 1927) that present a national description of the workloads and activities of the Nation's juvenile courts.

In addition to the annual Juvenile Court Statistics series of reports, products stemming from the Archive include OJJDP Bulletins, and Fact Sheets, the juvenile court information on OJJDP's Statistical Briefing Book Web site, the interactive, web-based analysis packages Easy Access to Juvenile Court Statistics that enable users to conduct their own national analyses of the automated records of delinquency cases.

Visit the National Juvenile Court Data Archive project page to learn more.

National Juvenile Justice Data Analysis Project

This project serves as OJJDP's statistical analysis center for responding to the research needs of the Office and the juvenile justice community. The project has completed dozens of reports and web-based products on a wide range of topics. These reports are based on analyses of the major juvenile justice national data sets (e.g., the Census of Juveniles in Residential Placement, Juvenile Residential Facility Census, the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997, the National Incident-Based Reporting System, the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting Program, and the National Crime Victimization Survey). The most notable is the Juvenile Offenders and Victims series of reports, bulletins, and fact sheets that have become a standard in the field. The web-based products are available through the OJJDP Statistical Briefing Book, a site developed and maintained by the project, that presents the most current statistics on juvenile offenders and the juvenile justice system. The project has also prepared a series of web-based, interactive data analysis and presentation tools that enable users to perform custom analyses of data covering a range of juvenile justice topics. Visit the Data Analysis Tools section of the Statistical Briefing Book to find out what is available. The project, like its predecessor project the Juvenile Justice Statistics and Systems Development Program, also works with national and local data collectors to improve the quality of their data.

Visit the National Juvenile Justice Data Analysis Project project page to learn more.

National Juvenile Probation Census Project

The National Juvenile Probation Census Project (NJPCP) is funded by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention to develop a reliable count of the number and characteristics of youth under juvenile probation supervision in the United States and an understanding of the juvenile probation offices that supervise them. The project includes two distinct data collections: the Census of Juvenile Probation Supervision Offices (CJPSO) and the Census of Juveniles on Probation (CJP). NCJJ is partnering with Westat on this project, bringing complementary strengths to the work. Westat, the prime contractor, is a nationally recognized leader in survey methodology, sampling, and large-scale data collection and has expertise in designing nationally representative samples. Westat's partner, NCJJ, brings an unmatched national juvenile justice reputation, substantial expertise in administrative records extraction and analysis, and extensive research experience in juvenile justice issues. The project team employs multiple resources to update the current NJPCP roster, using an approach based on each state's organization of juvenile probation supervision. After revising the current data collection instruments incorporating stakeholder input to enhance coverage and clarity while minimizing respondent burden, NCJJ fields the surveys, collects the data, and develops analytic data files that support reliable state and national estimates. The project team also present findings at national probation and juvenile justice conferences.

National Resource Center for Legal and Judicial Issues

The NRCLJI is a national collaborative technical assistance project funded for a 5-year period by the Children's Bureau at the U.S Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The principal collaborators are the ABA's Center for Children and the Law (lead agency), the National Center for State Courts, and the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges. The NRCLJI is one of ten resource centers funded by the Children's Bureau, with this resource center focused on supporting and improving the shared needs between Child Welfare Agencies and Court Improvement Projects on a wide variety of topics affecting youth in the child welfare and justice systems. NCJJ was hired to act as the project's evaluator and began working on the project in fall of 2009. A variety of qualitative and quantitative methods are used to asses the effects of the technical assistance delivered by NRCLJI staff and consultants including case studies, surveys, interviews, focus groups, file review, and observation. Evaluation staff also provide support and guidance to NRCLJI staff and consultants to build their internal capacity to identify and measure short, intermediate, and long-term outcomes of technical assistance.

State Training and Technical Assistance Center (STTAC)

NCJJ was originally awarded a grant in partnership with the American Institutes for Research (AIR) and the Coalition for Juvenile Justice (CJJ) by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) to provide technical assistance and training to states, tribes, territories and local communities nationwide in support of their delinquency programming funded under the Juvenile Accountability Incentive Block Grants (JAIBG) and Title II funding streams. In FY2012/2013, NCJJ received additional funding from STTAC to provide web-based technical assistance materials (STTAC State Profiles). National overviews and state-level content were developed as a result and posted on the OJJDP Statistical Briefing Book. In addition to state-level information, NCJJ also developed 3 primers for juvenile justice professionals related to continuous quality improvement. For FY2013/2014, NCJJ will update several of the Statistical Briefing Book FAQs and will provide technical assistance to states, primarily regarding data to support Relative Rate Index and Disproportionate Minority Contact decision making. 

Survey of Juveniles Charged as Adults in Criminal Court

The 2009 Survey of Juveniles Charged as Adults in Criminal Courts (SJCACC) will collect information about the case processing of defendants younger than age 18 in criminal courts. This information is critical to understanding how many youth are charged in criminal court, the characteristics of these youth, the pathways that lead them to criminal court, and the final disposition of their cases. Westat and NCJJ bring complementary strengths and expertise to the 2009 Survey of Juveniles Charged in Adult Criminal Courts. Westat, the prime contractor, is a nationally recognized leader in survey methodology, sampling, and large-scale data collection and has expertise in designing nationally representative samples for the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) surveys. Westat's partner, NCJJ, is a national expert on the transfer of juvenile offenders to criminal courts and brings expertise in administrative records extraction and analysis, and extensive research experience in juvenile justice issues to the design and implementation of this survey. In addition, the related work NCJJ has already undertaken for the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, including extensive research into state laws and jurisdiction-specific reports on criminal processing of youth, has served as essential groundwork for this study.