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Coding: An Information Trail without Walking the Prison Trail

Coding: An Information Trail without Walking the Prison Trail

By Sarah Doxat-Pratt

 I joined the COMPEN team in February this year, tasked with coding interview data from the Entry-Exit-Post-Release research. The EEPR study involved following the journeys of prisoners through the criminal justice system, interviewing them soon after entry to prison, shortly before release, and in the community a few months after their release. The study aimed to deepen understanding of the experience of prison, but also to focus on the significance of transition moments in and out of prison – and so interviews covered details of the whole sentence, from before the arrest to life post-release. Coding is not the most glamourous aspect of a research project, either to do or to reflect on, but I hope here to provide some reflections from my experiences which will illuminate the process. 

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logo The Comparative Penology Group is led by Dr Ben Crewe and his research team who, since 2016, have been working on a five-year project titled: 'Penal policymaking and the prisoner experience: a comparative analysis'.

The research is based in England & Wales, and Norway, and involves four inter-related studies of (a) penal policymaking and the penal field (b) the experience of entry into and release from custody (c) the daily experiences of female prisoners and imprisoned sex offenders, and (d) prisoners in the most secure parts of each jurisdiction's prison system.

This project is funded by the European Research Council (ERC).