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Available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike 4.0 International Licence



Publication Details

Successfully submitted for the award of Masters in Criminology to the Technological University Dublin, 2011.


The Criminal Justice (Community Service) (Amendment) Act of 2011 is legislation which is aimed at encouraging a greater use of community service orders for people convicted of minor offences. It places a requirement on Judges when considering the imposition of a sentence of 12 months or less to consider the alternative sanction of community service first. This is the first legislation for a number of years which is aimed at diverting offenders from prison and very little is known about the reasoning behind its introduction. This thesis will utilise the framework of policy analysis set out by Kingdon (1995) and developed by Jones and Newburn (2005) to assess the reasoning behind the legislation. The research will focus on the role played by policy entrepreneurs, civil servants, and interest groups in the introduction of the legislation. It will also examine whether academic expertise or evidence based research was employed in its introduction. The thesis examines whether symbolism, rhetoric or a specific policy outlook contributed to its introduction. The findings add to the body of research which suggests that individuals have a significant impact on which policies are chosen, and serve to emphasise the need for further research in the policy analysis area in the future.