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Policymakers have increasingly become aware that external seed money can stimulate the local adoption of innovations, but not necessarily their sustained use. This report suggests ways in which federal, state, and local officials might increase the likelihood that new ideas in criminal justice will actually be used at the local level. Based on case studies of 37 innovations in five states and eight counties, it addresses the following questions: What characteristics distinguish successful from unsuccessful innovations? Do features of the local criminal justice system constrain the choice of strategies for success? How, if at all, does fiscal retrenchment affect the innovation process and its results? What strategies might promote the translations of new ideas into local criminal justice practice? Section II identifies six key characteristics of successful innovations, while Sec. III discusses strategies for obtaining them. Section IV treats the effects of fiscal retrenchment on both the implementation and survival of criminal justice innovations, and Sec. V examines the policy implications of the findings.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation report series. The report was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 1993 that represented the principal publication documenting and transmitting RAND's major research findings and final research.

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