National Incarceration Briefing Series   

Our research helps the public understand that mass incarceration is both unprecedented and counterproductive.

report thumbnailStates of Incarceration: The Global Context 2016

Our report and infographic follows up the 2014 briefing that, for the first time, directly situated individual U.S. states in the global context. This updated version reveals that despite some progress, every region in the U.S. is still out of step with rest of the world when it comes to incarceration.

report thumbnailMass Incarceration: The Whole Pie 2016

Our report and comprehensive graphic provide the big picture: 2.3 million people are locked up in more than 6,000 correctional facilities operated by thousands of agencies. The "whole pie" gives the public and policymakers the foundation to now consider the types of changes that would end the country's reign as the number one incarcerator in the world.

report thumbnailStates of Incarceration: The Global Context

With data artist Josh Begley, we released a report with an interactive graphic that compares every U.S. state’s use of prison to that of other nations, showing that incarceration in every state — even those with relatively progressive policies — is out of line with the international community.

report thumbnailStates of Women's Incarceration: The Global Context

Our report and interactive graphic compare every U.S. state's use of prison for women to that of other nations, showing that not only do we incarcerate women far more than other nations, but we also incarcerate far more women than we have in the past.

report thumbnailCorrectional Control: Incarceration and supervision by state

Prison is just one piece of the correctional pie. Our report, interactive graphic, and 100+ pie charts for each state and D.C. provide breakdowns of the criminal justice system in each state.

report thumbnailTracking State Prison Growth in 50 States

State — not federal — policy is driving mass incarceration, but each state is charting its own course. This report includes 100+ graphs showing the rise (and occasional decline) of the incarceration rate in every state.

report thumbnail Breaking Down Mass Incarceration in the 2010 Census: State-by-State Incarceration Rates by Race/Ethnicity

Racial and ethnic disparities are an unacceptable but defining characteristic of our prison system, yet in 2006 the federal Bureau of Justice Statistics stopped publishing state-level information about racial disparities in incarceration. We used our familiarity with U.S. Census data to chart racial disparities in incarceration with 200+ graphs.

report thumbnailDetaining the Poor: How money bail perpetuates an endless cycle of poverty and jail time

With data scientist Daniel Kopf, we find that the ability to pay money bail is impossible for too many defendants because it represents eight months of a typical defendant's income.

report thumbnailPrisons of Poverty: Uncovering the pre-incarceration incomes of the imprisoned

With data scientist Daniel Kopf, we uncover the data to show that even before their incarceration, the people in prison are much poorer than Americans of similar ages.

report thumbnailSeparation by Bars and Miles: Visitation in state prisons

With data scientist Daniel Kopf, we find that extreme distances between prisons and the places that incarcerated people call home actively discourage family visits.

report thumbnailThe Racial Geography of Mass Incarceration

Racial and ethnic disparities are an unacceptable but defining characteristic of our prison system, and here we unlock part of the answer to why African-Americans and Latinos fill the prisons while Whites get the jobs running the prisons: the prisons are disproportionately built in White areas.

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