Thinking in Practice: Redefining the Relationship

  • Kathryn Farrow (Director of Education, School of Social Policy,University of Birmingham. Email:
  • Gill Kelly (Independent Training Consultant for KWP Associates, United Kingdom)
  • Brian Stout (De Montfort University, United Kingdom)

This paper examines the challenge of reconnecting probation knowledge, theory and practice throughout Europe. It will describe the history and rationale of the Thinking in Practice Seminar Series which was intended to promote thinking and debate about the supervision of offenders. It will consider how a collaborative approach might produce a greater groundswell of opinion and shared vision. The paper will draw upon practice literature and will use the seminar series as a case study to explore ways which allow probation services to continue to develop best practice. The paper will argue that the seminars have had some success in connecting with wider debates and could be replicated and developed further in other European jurisdictions.

Keywords: Probation training, Europe, Desistance, Theory into practice, Post-qualifying training

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