The original plan was that information about each jurisdiction would be collected by questionnaire. This plan was amended when it became clear that it was not possible to understand case management in the abstract, separate from the correctional system in which it operates.
The project specialists proposed the idea of a System Map, a common visual framework onto which case management in each jurisdiction could be super-imposed. A template was evolved which was then adapted to each jurisdiction.
This was achieved by identifying a correspondent for each jurisdiction. Each was sent a Briefing Pack to help establish common concepts. There followed a telephone interview and two rounds of editing. The System Maps were compared with the relevant chapter in the CEP Probation In Europe handbook.
The System Maps were then used as the working material for the Focus Groups, to which each correspondent was
invited. They were further refined following the Focus Groups.
These consistent formats enable comparisons to be more easily made between jurisdictions.
System Maps represent the product of the dialogue between the DOMICE Project and individual correspondents from each jurisdiction; they will necessarily reflect that person's perspective, view and experience. Though informative, they should not be taken to be an "official" version of the arrangements for case management in any jurisdiction.
The System Map Template was developed as a working tool within the DOMICE Project. A simple prototype was first used in the Briefing Pack for nominated correspondents in order to emphasise that the project was interested in an offender's experience of case management across the whole of a correctional system, not simply within probation services (whatever these may be called in different jurisdictions). For the purposes of gathering and storing information it separates case management arrangements into the 4 "domains" of:
Click here for a PDF of the system map template.
It was used to support the telephone interviews, as an aide memoire for the interviewers and as the repository of information gathered. Accordingly, it increased in complexity as more variations in correctional systems emerged through the interviews. Each individual System Map is a "customised" version of the Template in use at the time There are many different ways in which the relationship between different elements of a correctional system can be represented; the System Map Template is simply the way developed for doing this within the DOMICE Project.