Using social innovation as a theoretical framework to guide future thinking on facilitating collaboration between mental health and criminal justice services.

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Hean, Sarah ; Willumsen, E. ; Ødegård, A. ; Bjørkly, S. (2015)

Offender mental health is a major societal challenge. Improved collaboration between mental health and criminal justice services is required to address these challenges. This paper explores the potential social innovation as a concept that offers an alternative perspective on collaborations between these services and a framework to develop theoretically informed strategies to optimize interorganizational working. Two key innovation frameworks are applied to the offender mental health field and practice illustrations provided of where new innovations in collaboration, and specifically cocreation between the mental health system and criminal justice system, take place. The paper recommends the development of a competency framework for leaders and front line staff in the mental health system and criminal justice systems to raise awareness and skills in the innovation process, especially through cocreation across professional and organizational boundaries.
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