Coalition Government Penal Policy 2010–2015

Austerity, Outsourcing and Punishment

  • David Skinns

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. David Skinns
    Pages 1-4
  3. David Skinns
    Pages 27-41
  4. David Skinns
    Pages 95-150
  5. David Skinns
    Pages 151-200
  6. David Skinns
    Pages 229-243
  7. Back Matter
    Pages 245-299

About this book


This book shows how the overall impact of the penal policy agenda of the Coalition Government 2010-2015 has not led to the intended 'rehabilitation revolution', but austerity, outsourcing and punishment, designated here as 'punitive managerialism'.

The policy of austerity has led to significant budget cuts in legal aid and court services which threaten justice. It has also led to staffing reductions and overcrowding in the prison system which threaten order and have undermined more positive work with prisoners. The outsourcing of prison and community-based offender services is based on untried method with uncertain results. The shift in orientation towards punishment is regrettable because it is essentially negative. The book notes that this move to punitive managerialism is located in the broader trend towards neo-liberalism. It concludes by attempting to articulate the parameters of an affordable and emotionally satisfying yet humane and rational penal policy.

David Skinns has a long-standing interest in penal policy, first stimulated by his work with young offenders, immediately after graduating. After completing postgraduate degrees at Sheffield University, UK, and Cambridge University, UK, he went on to further develop this interest by teaching criminology in higher education. He completed a PhD at Hull University, UK. After retiring from teaching, he began work with the Independent Monitoring Board for Prisons. 


Criminology Prisons Penology Neoliberalism Probation Criminal Justice Criminal Law Conservatives Liberal Democrats Adult offenders young offenders Sentencing community-based offender services rehabilitation managerialism Legal Aid Privitization court reforms

Authors and affiliations

  • David Skinns
    • 1
  1. 1.KendalUnited Kingdom

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2016
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, London
  • eBook Packages Law and Criminology
  • Print ISBN 978-1-137-45733-2
  • Online ISBN 978-1-137-45734-9
  • Buy this book on publisher's site