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better courts | better outcomes

The “Human Service Sector” – Using information to make better decisions

July 22, 2013

In his newly-launched blog, Derek Coursen, an expert in information management and systems within the public and nonprofit service sectors, explores issues relating to the systemic ways public service organizations can manage, organize and use information to ultimately make better decisions and more effective programs.  Recognizing that human services have chronic problems with managing information, his blog is focused on solving them.  We applaud Derek for his dedication to addressing these complex issues and are thrilled he’s part of our …

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Keynote Address At Gideon Event Celebrating Harvard Professor

July 6, 2013

The other week I gave the Keynote address at the Kentucky Department of Public Advocacy’s celebration of Gideon versus Wainwright. It was a fantastic event. The public defenders that received awards spoke so beautifully about their work. And the speakers were fantastic (David Boise and Ted Olson!).

The Keynote I gave was dedicated to a psychology professor at Harvard, Richard Hackman, who died in January. Professor Hackman studied how we work together when we collaborate. He performed system analysis of the CIA, kitchen …

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The “What Ifs” Along the Road in the Quest of a Justice Index

July 2, 2013

In his recent blog “Made2Measure”, Ingo Keilitz, a Senior Justice Reform Specialist at The World Bank, contemplates the potential of creating a Justice Index – even if imperfect – that measures the performance of criminal court systems.  We couldn’t have said it better ourselves.

http://made2measure.blogspot.com/2013/06/the-what-ifs-along-road-in-quest-of.html

FRIDAY, JUNE 28, 2013

The “What Ifs” Along the Road in the Quest of a Justice Index

What if we could draw an indicator of the “health” of the justice systems throughout the United States – a Justice
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Measuring What Matters – Lessons from Education

June 19, 2013

The other week, we posted an article highlighting the use of data to identify best practices in healthcare.  We got another “bright spot” here (link provided below); but this time it’s in education: nonprofits and educators working together to “measure what we know truly matters”  when determining whether children are learning the necessary skills to prepare them for college and a career.

Here at MFJ, we’re looking to do the same for local criminal justice systems.  Currently, we’re testing and refining …

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“Wash Your Hands” And Other Lessons in Getting the Basics Right

June 4, 2013

In the land of big data, there’s much talk about identifying “best practices.” Here’s a good one: If you’re a medical professional working with patients, a good best practice is to wash your hands. So hospital workers wear buttons that say, “Tell me to wash my hands.” And then they are graded by how well they do this incredibly simple but important task. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/29/nyregion/hospitals-struggle-to-get-workers-to-wash-their-hands.html?_r=1&

It’s not rocket science. But as an expert knows, it’s hard to do the basics well …

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Some oversight, please…

December 14, 2011

You all know who Jerry Sandusky is by now. But if your cave collapse has you out in the world for the first time, following are highlights of the man’s adventures in abuse:

1998: Reports surface that assistant coach of the Penn State football team, Jerry Sandusky, “showered” with an 11-year-old boy. The boy was interviewed. Another possible victim was interviewed. The police wrote a report. What looked like the stuff of a solid case went to then Centre County, …

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Welcome

December 8, 2011

Well, we’re just getting up and running with the new website. We’re pretty excited about it. We hope it’s a place people will come to learn more about what’s happening in the lower court system across America. We also hope people will recognize MFJ as the venue for discussion about what is happening in the courts. So come tell us what you know!…

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