Working Title of PhD: Understanding Decision-Making Process – A study on Reintegration Officers from the Singapore Prison Service
Synopsis: My research is concerned principally with the decision-making process in the community supervision period of young adult offenders in the Singapore’s Reformative Training Centre.
There is a dearth of knowledge in this area as most Singapore’s research focused on offenders, risk assessments and interventions but limited research on the prison officers. Thus, this study is examining whether there are other factors that could influence the decision-making of these officers, more commonly known as reintegration officers. Past literature posited that organisational culture such as legal and extra-legal variables and the new penology narratives (i.e. actuarial risk tools and organisational rehabilitation paradigm) somewhat influenced the decision-making process. However, other research has also identified that decision-making factors could be influenced by the respective professional orientation and the characteristics of the decision-makers. Based on these findings, this research aims to explore other potential components, such as personal belief system, that may influence the decision-making process. It will also attempt to examine the relationships organisational culture, professional culture and personal belief system and its impact on the decision-making.
Utilising the phenomenological approach, the exploratory study is designed to have an in-depth analysis on how Reintegration Officers synthesized the prescriptive organisational work processes, the influence of actuarial tools and the challenges of community supervision in their decision-making activity. The research will also attempt to situate the officer’s lived experience with his/her supervisee(s) and belief systems (values, norms or ethos) that may influence the decision-making process.
Year commenced PhD study: 2015 (Full-time)
Funding Source: National University of Singapore & MENDAKI
Institution: University of Glasgow
PhD Supervisors: Prof Fergus McNeill, Dr Sarah Armstrong
Keywords: Discretionary Decision making, Youth Justice, Community Supervision