Mindfulness and other Buddhist-derived interventions in correctional settings: A systematic review
Aggression and Violent Behavior
Format: Journal Article
Publication Year: n/a
Source ID: shanti-sources-21621
Abstract: Abstract Interest into the rehabilitative utility of Buddhist-derived interventions (BDIs) for incarcerated populations has been growing. The present paper systematically reviews the evidence for BDIs in correctional settings. Five databases were systematically searched. Controlled intervention studies of BDIs that utilized incarcerated samples were included. Jadad scoring was used to evaluate methodological quality. PRISMA (preferred reporting items for systematic reviews and meta-analysis) guidelines were followed. The initial search yielded 85 papers, but only eight studies met the inclusion criteria. The eight eligible studies comprised two mindfulness studies, four vipassana meditation studies, and two studies utilizing other BDIs. Intervention participants demonstrated significant improvements across five key criminogenic variables: (i) negative affect, (ii) substance use (and related attitudes), (iii) anger and hostility, (iv) relaxation capacity, and (v) self-esteem and optimism. There were a number of major quality issues. It is concluded that BDIs may be feasible and effective rehabilitative interventions for incarcerated populations. However, if the potential suitability and efficacy of BDIs for prisoner populations is to be evaluated in earnest, it is essential that methodological rigor is substantially improved. Studies that can overcome the ethical issues relating to randomization in correctional settings and employ robust randomized controlled trial designs are favored.